FX Repatriation Push : Fidelity Bank restates support for CBN

By Ekeoma Ogwo

Fidelity Bank Plc says it is committed to actively supporting the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) efforts to achieve its goal of $200 billion in Foreign Exchange (FX) repatriation from non-oil exports over the next five years.

The Executive Director, Northern Businesses, Fidelity Bank Plc, Hassan Imam, gave the assurance in Kano at a workshop for exporters and investors, a statement by the bank said.

The workshop was on the implementation and opportunities in the new CBN RT200 FX Policy.

Imam stated that the financial institution would not relent in its efforts to bridge the knowledge gap in the non-oil sector space.

This is by facilitating the necessary processes and documentation for the new policy, with the goal of increasing FX repatriation through exportation.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that CBN had unveiled the RT200 FX Programme on Feb. 10, 2022.

This is part of measures to reduce the increasing demand for foreign currency by importers, which frequently puts excessive pressure on the exchange rate.

With the implementation of this policy, the CBN had said that the supply of foreign currency to commercial banks would  cease by the end of 2022.

While investors would be able to generate forex through the RT200 FX Program template provided to strengthen commodity exports.

Also, Mannir Ringim, Regional Bank Head, North West 1, Fidelity Bank Plc,  re-emphasised the bank’s readiness to support government’s economic imperatives to boost revenue in non-oil sector of the economy.

“As you know, Nigeria is currently an import-dependent economy with so much pressure on our currency and the source of revenue as a nation is petrol dollar.

“So, the initiative of the CBN is to leverage on our non-oil products especially in agriculture like hibiscus flower, cashew nut sesame and many other products for exports.

“Now, Fidelity Bank wants to remain the exporters’ bank of choice not only by providing finance but by helping exporters in bridging the knowledge gap in exporting their commodities.

“We are committed to this initiative to improve our economy, reduce pressure on local currency and provide an enabling environment to grow the non-oil sector to also create massive job opportunities”, Ringim said.

Isaiah Ndukwe, Head of Export and Agric Businesses at Fidelity Bank, spoke on the need for strategic planning in the non-oil sector.

According to him, the bank is well positioned to advance the CBN policy thrust to reduce our over-dependence on oil revenue in the country.

“The bank is committed to improving the banking system’s competitiveness while focusing on developing exporters’ capability in the fundamentals of local commodity exportation.

“The new policy will not only reshape exporters’ mindsets, but will also infuse value addition on their commodities, allowing them to earn more forex.’’

He said that the workshop tagged, “Harnessing Export Business Opportunities, CBN RT200 FX Programme: Current Issues, Non-oil Exports and Implications to Business’’ drew inspiration on the policy’s guidelines.

“The guidelines involve the provision of a single digit credit facility to exporters, provision of rebates on foreign currency, funding of commodity production and value-addition processes.

It also incorporates building terminals and the convening of a biannual summit for the review of the implementation of the policy.’’

The statement said that exporters at the sensitisation event expressed satisfaction on the capacity-building initiative as it enabled them to get acquainted with the CBN policy and opportunities in export business.

Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged commercial bank operating in Nigeria with over six million customers who are serviced across its 250 business offices and digital banking channels. (NAN)