The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced the use of Form X for SMEs that require basic documentation.
The introduction was part of its objectives to increase foreign exchange liquidity and make it accessible to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and other retail businesses.
Speaking on the development on Monday, the spokesman of the Apex Bank, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, said the innovative measure is meant to ease the bottlenecks associated with documentation usually encountered by this category of businesses.
Okorafor further noted that the new form, which must be completed by all SME applicants, requires them to fill the form with a supporting application letter, as well as beneficiary invoice and bank wire transfer details.
He added that the objective of the new guideline is to remove obstacles usually encountered by those whose FX needs for either visibles or invisibles transactions are as small as or less than $10,000.
Okorafor reiterated the central bank’s determination to continue to ensure adequate supply of FX for genuine transactions in the coming days.
Last week, the CBN had opened a special FX window for SMEs to enable entrepreneurs import eligible finished and semi-finished items not exceeding $20,000 for each business per quarter.
That was in addition to the special intervention in the Bureau de Change (BDC) segment of the FX market that saw each operator accessing $20,000, against $10,000 per week.
Okorafor had said: “The special interventions were necessitated by findings that a large number of SMEs were being crowded out of the FX space by large firms and will also service genuine demand for invisibles like tuition fees, medical and personal/basic travel allowance.”