The Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture (NACCIMA) believes that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should have issued N5,000 notes instead of redesigning the N200, N500, and N1,000 denominations.
In an interview on Monday in Abuja, NACCIMA director-general Sola Obadimu said that while the new banknote policy was commendable, it would have put less pressure on the masses if it had been implemented differently.
“If I were the CBN Governor, all I would have done was introduce the N5,000 note,” he said. “That would have helped mop up the money in circulation without the kickbacks we are getting.”
According to the Director-General, the hardships that Nigerians are experiencing as a result of the new policy would have been eliminated or reduced to the bare minimum.
According to the Director-General, the entire process would have been more cost-effective because “fewer amounts of bills would have been printed because it is a higher denomination.”
Mr. Obadimu stated that, aside from the ongoing swap, the naira’s strength against foreign currencies is a major concern, and it is disheartening to note that the naira is weak against foreign currencies, particularly the dollar and euro.
“Another thing is that our highest denomination, which is N1,000, is only worth two dollars at the official rate, and it is not too good for our image.” “There are €50 and €100 notes, and how much is a €100 note in naira?” stated the NACCIMA boss.
He added, “A euro is almost N1,000.” So, €100 is about N100,000. That is just a bill, and ours is worth just $2, which is not good for our image.’’
On the move to switch fully to a cashless policy, the director-general said it was a laudable initiative because “that is where the world is heading.” Digital economy is the new world order.”
The NACCIMA President, on the other hand, expressed reservations about the level of preparedness, particularly regarding internet infrastructure.
According to him, Nigeria has a long way to go toward achieving a cashless economy because the country’s internet infrastructure is weak, and Nigeria needs to develop its internet infrastructure, particularly in rural areas, to ensure a smooth transition.
The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, set January 31 as the deadline for the old N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes to expire. The deadline has been pushed back until February 10th.
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