Post Views: 547 • Insists Nigeria’s Economy Robust, To Maintain Variables The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), on Sunday evening formally confirmed fear...
• Insists Nigeria’s Economy Robust, To Maintain Variables
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), on Sunday evening formally confirmed fears of the inability to hold its maiden two-day Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) for the year, which should have opened on Monday, January 22, 2018.
A statement personally signed by CBN Governor and MPC chairman, Godwin Ifeanyi Emefiele, blamed this on the “inability to form a quorum as stipulated in the CBN Act, 2007.”
While assuring that a new meeting time-table will be released in due course, Emefiele said as a consequence, the apex bank shall continue to maintain key monetary policy variables decided at its November 2017.
They include the benchmark Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) of 14%; Cash Reserve Ratio, 30% and Asymmetric corridor at +200 and -500 basis points around the MPR.
He assured that the postponement notwithstanding, Nigeria’s key economic indicators remain as desired, on the back of rising oil prices and domestic production output, just as inflation has fallen to 15.37%.
Foreign reserves, Emefiele continued, rose from $23bn in October 2016 to $40.78bn as at January 18, 2018, even as investor confidence in the country remains strong as reflected in the inflows of about $13bn in a period of nine months since the opening of the Investors’ and Exporters’ Window in April 2017.
“These inflows have boosted FX supply and helped stabilize the exchange rate,” he stressed.
Analysts also link the FX inflow through the I&E window to the robust northward push of the Nigerian Stock Exchange’s Market Capitalisation by 22.3% from N13.21tr on November 30, 2017 to N16.15tr at the close of trading on January 29, 2018. Also, the All-Share index grew 18.18% from 37,944.60 to 45,092.83 basis points within the same period.
The CBN management, he further assured, “is determined to sustain these gains and will continue our vigilance and proactivity to ensure macro-economic stability through 2018.”
A statement by the CBN said the failure to hold the meeting followed the non-confirmation of replacements to fill positions vacated by retiring members including two Deputy Governors- Dr. Sarah Alade, who retired in March and Suleiman Barau, who exited in December, by the nation’s Senate.
Mrs. Alade was Deputy Governor for Economic Policy and Barau in charge of Operations, while Adebayo Adelabu, the Deputy Governor (Corporate Services), has served notice of disengagement ahead of the 2019 governorship election in Oyo State, among others.
This means only five MPC members are left at the moment, one short of the quorum from the 12 members committee as defined by the second schedule of the CBN Act.