Manufacturers Reject CBN Special Window Allocation To SMEs: Demand Increase

by Samuel Abasi Last updated on April 15th, 2017,

Manufacturers Reject CBN Special Window Allocation To SMEs: Demand Increase. Manufacturer’s Association of Nigeria, Ogun state chapter Chairman, Wale Adegbite said on Wednesday in Ota, Ogun, that such a decision would effective help the Small and Medium Enterprises ( SMEs) to import raw materials and boost the economy.

Adegbite  said this in reaction to the announcement by the CBN, through its Acting Director, Corporate Communication Department, Mr Isaac Okorafor, on Monday in Abuja, that the apex bank had opened a special window of $20,000 quarterly for SMEs to enable them to import eligible finished and semi-finished items into the country.

CBN spokesman, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, explained in a statement that the Bank’s special intervention was necessitated by findings that a large number of SMEs were being crowded out of the forex space by large firms.
He did not add that the crowding out has forced several of such businesses to turn to the parallel market to meet their forex requirements, effectively increasing demand for the greenback on the streets.

According to him, under the special arrangement, enterprises with employee strengths of between 10 to 199 and an asset base of between N5 million to less than N500 million will be offered the opportunity to import eligible items within the approved threshold. Okorafor further disclosed that the central bank had begun the massive sale of forex in different sectors of the market this week.


The bank also said that its special intervention became necessary after finding out many SMEs were being crowded out of the foreign exchange market (Forex).

However, According to Wale Adegbite, the new special window by the CBN is not sufficient for the SMEs to import eligible finished and semi-finished items into the country.

“The new special windows just introduced for the SMEs by the apex bank was too nominal and small for them to import goods into the country,” he said.

The chairman said that an upward review of the intervention by the CBN would stimulate activities of SMEs that would further generate employment opportunities.

Adegbite also emphasised the need for the CBN to open another special window for manufacturers to enable them to operate optimally since the $60,000 incentive had been discontinued.

“The SMEs and manufacturers form the bedrock of any nation because they play vital roles in economic development as well as providing jobs for the people.”

As the demand for foreign exchange continues unabated in the parallel market segment of the forex market, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Monday unfolded yet another policy measure, stating that it has opened a special forex window for small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs).

This, according to the central bank, would enable small and medium-sized businesses import eligible finished and semi-finished items, not exceeding $20,000 per operator each quarter.

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