Nigeria’s apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has granted Bureau De Change (BDC) operators a two-week market holiday.
The news was contained in a statement on Friday, March 27, 2020, by Aminu Gwadabe, President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON).
According to the ABCON President, the development was a fallout of a formal request by the Association to the CBN for permission to proceed on tax holidays in view of the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy. He said that a notice of CBN’s approval had been dispatched to BDC operators and directors, pointing out that sale of foreign exchange to BDCs has been suspended for a two-weeks.
“This is to urgently bring to the notice of our members nationwide that following our letter of recommendation to the CBN to grant us a market holiday on our bidding days as a proactive and preventive measure on the scourge of the novel COVID-19 and the ban on all air/land travels.
“The CBN has granted our request, effective tomorrow Friday, March 27, 2020, there shall be no market days henceforth for a tentative period of two weeks,” the statement read in part.
Gwadabe also admonished the public to refrain from panic buying, hoarding and patronising street traders as the CBN had enough reserve to continue supplies when the BDCs resumed operation at the end of their holiday. He also advised members to adhere strictly to guidelines prescribed by government and the health authorities on the preventive measures against COVID-19.
*** Iyke Nwabueze