In a deft move to sanitise the operations of Bureaux De Change, the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has unveiled new guidelines that restrict their businesses to only the registered headquarters of the approved foreign exchange dealers.
The apex bank has also ordered the BDCs to deposit a mandatory cautionary deposit of 35 million naira in an account with the CBN, in addition to a minimum capital requirement of 35 million naira. According to experts, the weekend decision of the CBN is in a bid to tighten regulation to curb speculation to shore up the country’s dollar reserves and firm up the naira.
Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, on has released new guidelines to enhance the operational efficiency of Bureaux De Change and strengthen their regulation in Nigeria.
The CBN in a circular with reference number FPR/DIR/CIR/GEN/01/030 dated November 30, 2015 and signed by Kevin Amugo, director, Financial Policy & Regulation Department said the guideline is in line with the powers vested on it by the CBN Act of 2007, Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act of 1995 and the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act 1991(as amended).
According to the CBN, the Guidelines, which supersede the one issued in May 2002, shall take effect from January 1, 2016.
The new guideline is expected to tighten regulation and curb speculation after the long slide in oil prices hit its dollar reserves and currency, a Reuters report said.
In the new guideline Bureaux De Change operators in Nigeria are expected to deposit a mandatory cautionary deposit of N35 million in an account with the Central Bank and another N35 million minimum capital requirement.
The CBN also restricted BDC agents to one branch operations, whose license will be renewed yearly and gave those operating with branches 90 days to close them.
“Bureau De Change is Licenced as a unit institution. No Bureau De Change shall have a branch office outside its registered office. All Bureaux De Change that under the 2002 Guidelines have branches are required to close such branches within 90 days of the 2015 guidelines,” the CBN said.
The Central Bank advised that individuals wishing to sell more than $10,000 should be required to disclose their source.