February 03, (THEWILL) – The Federal Government, through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has further jerked up the exchange rate for cargo clearance to N1,413.62/$1.
This is coming barely 24 hours after it increased the Customs exchange rate to N1,356.883 per dollar on Friday.
THEWILL reports that the exchange rate, which was increased on Friday, by 43% from N951.842/$ to N1,356.42, was further increased on Saturday, by 4.4% to N1,413.62.
While the new rate has since been reflected on the Customs trade portal, stakeholders in the sector have expressed disapproval to the increase.
Reacting to the latest increase, an angry stakeholder said, “The whole situation has given away this government as insensitive to the plight of Nigerians.
“While we are still discussing the implications of Friday’s increase and how it is going to impact the lives of the ordinary Nigerians, this government went ahead to slam yet another increase.
“I don’t know why a government can be so cruel and insensitive”, the irate freight forwarder lamented.
On Friday, Chief Executive Officer of the Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprises (CPPE), Muda Yusuf, said the increase will “definitely affect every area of our economic life, already; we recorded a drop in the volume of import last year, so you imagine what will happen with this increment.
“The sharp depreciation and the increment of import duty will no doubt affect the volume of trade because the cost of import is going to increase significantly and this will affect practically all the key components of cost.
“That is the cost of transportation, the cost of shipment, the cost of clearing and this will slow down the velocity and the tempo of activities in the maritime sector. And that tempo has already reduced anyway and it further reduces.”
THEWILL reports that the latest development became the sixth time the exchange rate for cargo clearance was raised between June 2023 and February 2024.
The CBN had in June, adjusted the exchange rate from N422.30/$1 to N589/$1 in June, 2023. In July, it was adjusted to N770.88/$1, in November, it was adjusted to N783.174/$1, while in December, it was adjusted to N951.842 per $1. This was further adjusted on Friday, February 2 to N1,356.42 per $1 and N1,413.62/$1 on February 3.