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Naira Firms On I&E As CBN Stops Banks From Processing Maize Imports - LEADERSHIP

JULY 14, 2020

By BUKOLA IDOWU

The value of the naira went in different directions at the Nigeria Autonomous Foreign Exchange (NAFEX) and parallel market windows as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday directed banks to stop processing documents for the importation of maize.

The apex bank also released the operational guidelines for Global Standing Instruction (GSI) which allows financial institutions to access funds of defaulting debtors that are deposited in other banks, effective August 1, 2020.

The CBN in a circular released on its website yesterday, said as part of its effort to “increase local production and stimulate a rapid economic recovery, safeguard rural livelihoods and increase jobs, which were lost as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Authorised Dealers are hereby directed to discontinue the processing of Form M for the importation of maize/corn with immediate effect.

“Accordingly, all Authourised Dealers are hereby requested to submit the list of Form M already registered for the importation of maize/corn on or before the close of business on Wednesday July, 15, 2020.”

Meanwhile the value of the naira at the CBN official rate remained stable at N381 to the dollar by the close of business yesterday. At the NAFEX window also known as the Investors’ and Exporters’ (I&E), the naira which opened at N387.46 to the dollar had closed at N386 with a turnover of $25.17 million, while the value of the currency had declined on the streets, selling at N465 as against N464 which it sold at the weekend.

At the bureau de change (BDC) end of the market, the value of the naira had also depreciated to N467 to the dollar from N465 which it sold at the weekend.

On the guidelines for GSI, CBN in a circular issued by the CBN director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Kevin Amugo the GSI is targeted at facilitating an improved credit repayment system, reducing non-performing loans in the Nigerian banking system and watch-listing consistent loan defaulters.

The CBN in collaboration with stakeholders had last year developed the necessary protocols to facilitate a seamless implementation of the GSI process, including eligible loans granted from August 28, 2019.

Accordingly, it had issued the guideline to regulate the operations of the GSI which will be implemented with effect from August 1, 2020, as a way to enhance loan recovery across the banking sector.

The guideline states that the GSI shall serve as a last resort by a Creditor bank, without recourse to the Borrower, to recover past due obligations (Principal and Accrued Interest only, excluding any Penal Charges) from a defaulting Borrower through a direct set-off from deposits/investments held in the Borrower’s qualifying bank accounts with participating financial institutions.

The Global Standing Instruction, is a mandate authorising recovery of past due obligations from any and all deposit accounts maintained by a defaulter. The GSI is limited to debt recovery only and is limited to only individual accounts. Although it can be used in recovery of repayment amount, the GSI cannot be used to recover any additional fees, charges or penal rate for default.

To set up the mandate, customers will fill in their BVN, Credit Risk Management System (CRMS) number, the full repayment amount, the loan duration and the repayment account. The GSI is being maintained by Nigerian Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) which is the custodian of BVN and holds records of all bank accounts in the country.

Once a debtor defaults on a loan, the GSI is triggered with the creditor bank activating the mandate on GSI Module specifying the recovery amount. Once triggered, the available accounts for recovery are identified, available balances for the accounts are retrieved and funds from the accounts according to Recover Logic are recovered.

Participating financial institutions by the GSI mandate must honour all transactions from NIBSS with a valid GSI Mandate code. The GSI Transactions can be triggered upon default on repayment, seven days after scheduled repayment date or before application of penal rates.

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