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Nigeria Will Fulfill Every Commitment To Clear FX Backlog, Tinubu Promises 

He said the Nigerian banking industry needs to strike a balance between regulation and overregulation.

President Bola Tinubu, on Thursday, assured that every commitment by his administration towards resolving foreign exchange (FX) backlogs through injection of funds into the market would be fulfilled.

Speaking at the opening of the 2023 Bank Directors’ Summit in Abuja, Tinubu said funding of liquidity in the FX market, even though a short-term solution, remained critical for the economy at the moment.

The summit was organised by the Bank Directors Association of Nigeria (BDAN), with the theme, “Emerging Issues: Navigating the Complex Balance Between Regulation and Compliance.”

Tinubu, who was represented at the summit by Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Mr. Wale Edun, insisted there was “no reason to feel that the indications that were made earlier had changed”, adding, “It just takes time.” He said the government was doing everything in its power to try to attract funds that would shore up liquidity in the FX segment.

There had been concerns by stakeholders that the government appeared to have reneged on its earlier commitment to inject between $7 billion to $10 billion into the FX market to clear the existing backlogs that impaired investors’ confidence in the economy.

But Tinubu said it was only a matter of time before short, medium and long-term funds would be mobilised across the spectrum.

He stated that overregulation of the banking industry could be counter-productive and stifle innovation and added that there is a need to strike a balance between regulation and overregulation.

The president said, “The regulator must partner with the industry to promote innovations that drive financial access, and banks must embed integrity and transparency into our culture and technology systems.

Equally speaking at the summit, Vice President Kashim Shettima emphasised the critical role of the banking sector to financial stability and growth. Shettima believed the banking system would get stronger through the various regulations.

He said regular dialogue was required to ensure bank profitability and sustainability.

The vice president, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Economic Affairs, Dr. Tope Fasua, said he was confident that the central bank under the new leadership had committed to an elevated level of professionalism and focus, creating more space for enhanced intermediation in the credit space for commercial merchants.

James Emejo