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CBN swells list of forex restriction, includes textile, clothing materials

…Plans anchor scheme for local investors

In what looked like answered prayers in the minds of struggling indigenous textile stakeholders, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Tuesday announced inclusion of textile and allied clothing materials into the basket of restrictions of sale of foreign exchange to importers of textiles and other clothing materials.
He said whereas the restriction takes immediate effect to encourage local growth of the textile and cotton industry, CBN will be working out a tailored anchor programme to midwife the new policy direction in the ailing sector.
With the consensus inclusion, textile now raises the number of items in the basket from 41 since 2016 to 44. Recall that CBN had last year added cement and tomato paste following successful backward integration in both items.
This formed key resolutions taken by the CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, in Abuja during a meeting with stakeholders in the cotton value chain.
In his action defence, Emefiele whose tenure at the apex bank expires June this year noted that his decision was powered by the gains so far made in the sectors that had been under forex restriction.
Accordingly, he warned that henceforth, banks and dealers in the foreign exchange market are prohibited from selling forex to those seeking to import textiles and clothing materials, stressing that time has come to revive the hitherto highest employer of labour in Nigeria.

Industry analysts say the new policy will further give hope to rising number of cotton farmers in parts of the country as CBN warns against smuggling of textile materials henceforth. Besides, there are strong believe that with the new forex ban, majority of moribund textile companies may be revived.