ABCON warns FG on France’s involvement in ECO currency
The nation’s currency dealers, under the aegis of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), have raised concerns over the seeming direct involvement of France in the sub-regions Eco currency project, advising the government to be wary of the move.
The association, at its 2019 fourth quarterly review in Lagos, last weekend, the National President, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, said that Nigeria should critically examine the role of France in the currency project before further decision to participate.
Describing the recent decision of the francophone countries to change the name of their common currency to ECO as worrisome, coupled with the attempt by France to continue its dominant control of the Francophone West Africa country’s economies, he warned: “Nigeria must not adopt the currency with France or Euro as the background promoters to avoid enslaving West Africa economically.
“If the prime objective to facilitate cross border trade and economic development of the member states is still to be achieved, the structure of the system must be built on fundamentals in the sub-region to compete with other economic blocks.
“Government is encouraged to pursue the project with sincerity of purpose based on sound policies devoid of interference from any economic block.
“The Central Bank of the sub-region should be independent to invest the reserves in any world currency to satisfy the interest of constituent states.”
Similarly, ABCON has called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to address the various factors threatening to the profitability of BDCs in the country, particularly “a market structure that exposes a BDC to unconventional structure, unfair competition and risk”.
Stressing that the CBN should allow BDCs to determine what to buy and sell, Gwadabe said: “Monetary authority determines the BDC firm’s buying rate, but unconcerned with the open end of selling rate even though there is a cap. They should be free to determine what to buy and sell like in any market structure.
“Very clearly, the BDC’s selling rate is still largely determined by the parallel market rates, which is higher in liquidity without any restraint from the authorities to curtail their activities.
“The firm is still largely exposed to several operations and systemic risks, which require the appropriate articulation and design of structural adjustments to place the BDC firm on the right part during the new decade,” the group noted.