The Bankers’ Committee yesterday announced that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will commence sanctioning exporters who fail to repatriate foreign exchange proceeds from their international business.
Addressing financial journalists at the end of the Bankers’ Committee meeting in Lagos, Citibank Nigeria Managing Director/CEO Akin Dawodu pointed out a provision in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Foreign Exchange Manual that mandates all exporters to repatriate export proceeds back to the country to support the local currency and boost the economy.
Dawodu said the manual provides a 90-day grace period during which all proceeds from non-oil exports must be repatriated to the country and all arrears cleared. He said after the moratorium, non-compliant exporters will be blacklisted and banned from accessing banking services as well as forex from the CBN.
Also speaking, CBN Director, Banking Supervision, Abdullahi Ahmad, said the apex bank is monitoring non-oil exporters and assessing compliance levels. “The period of grace is gone and now is the time for heavy sanctions against defaulters. Defaulters will be banned from accessing banking services,” he said.
FSDH Merchant Bank Managing Director Mrs. Hamda Ambah said the Bankers’ Committee also agreed with CBN to adopted a unified rate N360/$ for all Personal Travel Allowances (PTAs), Basic Travel Allowances (BTAs), school fees and transactions without commission.L-R: The Chief Executive Officer of Citibank Nigeria Limited, Mr. Akin Dawodu, , the Managing Director/CEO of FSDH, Mrs. Hamda Ambah, The Director, Banking Supervision, CBN, Alhaji Ahmad Abdullahi and the Chief Executive Officer of Stanbic IBTC Plc, Demola Sogunle at briefing journalists shortly after bankers committee meetings in Lagos
She said the committee also urged bank customers to report any defaulting lender for appropriate sanctions. The banks are to buy dollar from the CBN at N357/$1 and sell to end-users at N360/$1.
According to the CBN manual, proceeds of oil and non-oil exports are to be repatriated into the export proceeds domiciliary accounts of their exporters’ accounts within 90 days for oil exports and 180 days for non-oil exports. Where this policy is violated, the collecting bank will be liable to a fine of 10 per cent of the Free On Board value of the transaction, including other appropriate penalties as provided in the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA).
Likewise, where the exporter fails to repatriate the proceeds into the domiciliary account within the stipulated period, the exporter will be barred from participating in all the segments of foreign exchange market in Nigeria, it was noted.
Ahmad further said many exporters, who benefited from Federal Government support scheme, have continually failed to comply with this directive. The defaulters will be barred from accessing other banking services, he affirms.