24 May 2017, Sweetcrude, Abuja – Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Joseph Nnanna, says there an advantage in the current scarcity of foreign exchange in the country.
One advantage of the foreign-exchange shortages is that they forced Nigerians to buy more local products, including food such as rice, Nnanna said.
“The craze for imported goods has declined. Our consumption pattern is changing. We are producing what we used to import before,” he said.
He said the central bank will boost lending to agricultural businesses through its so-called intervention funds.
“We won’t lose sight of our developmental function, in the sense that if there’s a sector where we need to intervene, we will do so,” Nnanna said. “We are more bullish with the agricultural sector.”
He said the central bank will keep monetary policy tight as dollar shortages persist.
“Now is not the time to ease policy, he said in the capital, Abuja. Inflation slowed for a third month in April, but at 17.2 percent remains almost double the upper limit of the bank’s 6 percent to 9 percent target.
“We are battling with liquidity as it were, so tight monetary policy will be for now,” he said.