By Chijioke Okonrokwo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo
Mr Laolu Akande, Seniour Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, office of the Vice President, has made clarifications on Vice President Yemi Osinbajo view on Naira exchange rate.
Akande said on Tuesday that the vice president advocated a forex policy that curbed arbitrage and corruption, offering Nigeria cheaper dollars.
Osinbajo had made a presentation on the Economic Sustainability Plan, ESP, on Monday at the ministerial retreat at the State House Banquet Hall, Abuja.
Akande said… reports in the media mischaracterising as a call for devaluation, the view of the vice president that the Naira exchange rate was being kept artificially low. Osinbajo is not calling for the devaluation of the Naira.
“For context, the vice-president’s point was that currently the Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to obtain the dollar at N410, some of whom simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570. It is to stop this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the vice president was talking about; such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring 40 per cent profit”, he said.,
He said the vice president called for measures that would increase the supply of foreign exchange in the market rather than simply managing demand which opened up irresistible opportunities for arbitrage and corruption.
” The real issue confronting the economy on this matter is how to improve the supply of foreign exchange, but this is not what will happen if we do not allow the mechanisms like the importers and exporters window to work. If we alow this market mechanism to wrk as intended, we will find that the Naira will appreciate against the dollar as we restore confidence in the system., ” he concluded. NAN