Bureaux de change, BDC, operators are targeting the yearly $21 billion average forex inflow from Nigerians in Diaspora for their continued operations.
The World Bank Migration and Remittances Factbook 2016 showed that Nigerians living abroad sent home $20.8 billion in 2015. The figure is by far the largest volume of remittances to any country in Africa and the sixth largest in the world.
The President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), Aminu Gwadabe, said the body has already made a proposition to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to allow its over 3,000 members operate correspondence bank account.
He said the accounts would allow the BDCs receive over $21 billion annual Diaspora remittances and also allowed to operate like money transfer agents.
He said the CBN is currently reviewing a proposal from the ABCON and is confident of getting positive feedback because of the need to raise the dollar liquidity position in the market which will also boost naira stability.
The proposal, he added, would enable BDC operators open forex account with Bank of America or Barclays Bank or any other international lender.
The accounts, he said, would allow Nigerians living abroad send funds to their relatives or Nigerian counterparts through the foreign banks. The local BDCs will credit the recipients with the naira equivalents of the dollar credited to their accounts with the foreign banks.
This practice, when approved, he said would not only boost dollar liquidity in the market, but helps the country navigate through raging currency risks.
The ABCON boss said: “It is a proposal before the CBN because we want to help it expand the dollar supply side and make the market more liquid. We want the BDCs to be agents of Western Union and be involved in Diaspora remittances”.