The naira continued its fall on Thursday, with the greenback seeking at N280 against the United States dollar at the parallel market. The naira had sold for N269 on Wednesday. The currency began a steady decline about three weeks ago when the Central Bank of Nigeria stopped the sale of foreign exchange to over 1,600 Bureaux De Change operators due to improper documentation. The naira had prior to the decision by the CBN been trading around N241 to N243 for a long time. The apex bank on Wednesday, however, cut the amount of dollar it sold to each of the 2,270 BDCs that participated in the weekly forex sale to $10,000, down from the $30,000 it sold to them last week.
Analysts said, the significant cut in forex supply to the BDCs coupled with the existing huge unmet demand at the CBN official window has led to the recent pressure on the naira at the parallel market. Businesses have been struggling to access dollars as the CBN rations the greenback to preserve the country’s external reserves, which stood at $29.46bn as of December 15.