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CBN outlaws street trading of dollars, other foreign currencies from January 1, 2016

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has set out the guidelines for the operations of Bureau de Change (BDCs) operators in the country.

The guidelines, which are contained in the CBN’s latest circular, has prohibited the age-long practice of hawking foreign exchange on the streets, common in Lagos, Abuja, Port-Harcourt and some major northern cities.

Though the circular did not disclose how it intends to deal with hawkers, it stated that from January 1, 2016, street trading of the dollar is “non-permissible” and will be severely punished by the bank.
“Similarly, it shall be a ground for the revocation of licenses should any street trader in foreign currencies be found to have any business relationship with a licensed BDC”, the guideline reads.

The circular, titled “Revised Operational Guidelines for Bureau de Change in Nigeria”, prescribes that for a BDC to be considered valid in 2016, its must meet the financial requirement of maintaining a minimum deposit of N71.45 million with the CBN. 

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