By Obinna Chima
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Wednesday released a new circular clarifying its new rule on receipts of forex inflows from Diaspora remittances.
The CBN made the clarification in a circular titled: “Re: Amendment to Procedures for Receipt of Diaspora Remittances,” dated December 2, 2020, which was signed by its Director, Trade and Exchange Department, Dr. Ozoemena Nnaji.
It explained: “Further to the Circular Ref. No. TED/FEM/FPC/GEN/01/011 of November 30, 2020, on the above subject, we wish to reiterate and clarify to all International Money Transfer Operators (IMTO) the following: IMTOs must ensure that all funds in favour of beneficiaries/recipients in Nigeria be deposited into the agent banks‘ correspondent account.
“Agent banks (Deposit Money Banks) in Nigeria will be responsible for all payment to beneficiaries/recipients either in foreign currency cash (USD) or into the beneficiaries’/recipients’ domiciliary account in Nigeria.
“The mode (if payment either in cash or transfer is at the sole discretion of the beneficiaries/recipients. Please ensure strict compliance and be guided accordingly.”
The CBN had on Monday unveiled a new policy that grants unfettered access to forex from Diaspora and other money transfer remittances like Western Union and MoneyGram. The policy allows beneficiaries of Diaspora remittances through IMTOs to henceforth receive such inflows in the original foreign currency through the designated bank of their choice.
It had explained that the new regulation was part of efforts to liberalise, simplify and improve the receipt and administration of Diaspora remittances into Nigeria.
With the new policy, recipients of remittances may have the option of receiving such funds in foreign currency cash (US Dollars) or into their ordinary domiciliary account.
“These changes are necessary to deepen the foreign exchange market, provide more liquidity and create more transparency in the administration of Diaspora remittances into Nigeria,” the central bank had stated.