Bureaux De Change (BDCs) in Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt, Benin, among others are expecting the disbursements of their Diaspora remittances this week.
No fewer than 350 BDCs in the Lagos on Friday got $30,000 weekly allocations from four lenders – First Bank of Nigeria Limited, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc and Ecobank Nigeria Limited, it was gathered.
About $10.5 million was disbursed to beneficiaries at the interbank rate.
To ensure stability of the exchange rate and encourage participation of critical stakeholders in the foreign exchange market, the CBN directed through a circular to authorised dealers that all agents to approved International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) sell foreign currency accruing from inward money remittances to licensed BDCs.
The foreign currency proceeds of IMTOs sold to BDC operators shall be retailed to end users in accordance to CBN regulation. Only BDCs that have been cleared by the compliance department of the banks as fully compliant with the KYC requirement were allowed to buy.
The CBN issued a follow-up circular to all the banks, asking them to sell dollar to BDCs.
In the circular titled: Re: Sales of Foreign Currency Proceeds of International Money Transfers to Bureaux De Change Operators, CBN Acting Director, Trade and Exchange, W.D. Goting, said he authorised dealers should sell foreign exchange cash to BDCs subject to a maximum of $30,000 to a BDC per week.
He explained that a BDC shall nominate its preferred authorised dealer, a commercial bank, and can only procure the said amount from only that bank of its choice in a week. The CBN warned that any breach of this condition will attract appropriate sanction.
The commercial banks, which are the authorised dealers have been giving stringent conditions to the BDCs finally bowed to pressure from both the CBN to disburse the first set of cash. Nearly 2,600 BDCs are yet to get their alloocations, and are at various stages of documentation.
The banks also obtained com-pliance set guidelines commitment from the BDCs before selling to them. Part of the commitment were that the BDCs would not purchase forex from any other bank, except its bank of choice; foreign currency cash purchased by the BDCs shall be sold to forex end-users at a rate not exceeding two per cent margin above the buying rate.
The BDCs also pledged to ensure that purchased funds would be disbursed to end users and for eligible transactions only and shall render weekly returns on purchases from the banks to Trade and Exchange Department of the CBN.
The BDCs further promised to ensure strict compliance to the provisions of the anti-money laundering laws observance of appropriate KYC principles in the handling of foreign exchange transactions.