CBN rolls out plans to stop smuggling, vows to block several bank accounts

As the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) prepares for the next five years under the leadership of its Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, top of the agenda for the apex is to end the dumping of smuggled banned products into Nigeria.

The CBN Governor, Mr. Emefiele disclosed this on Saturday while Speaking at a consultative round table, in Lagos, which was titled: “Growing for growth”.

According to the CBN Governor, Nigeria has had brilliant economic policies over the years, but smuggling and dumping activities are largely responsible for sabotaging all efforts.

“Smugglers and dumpers are the major sabotage to the country’s economic policies. Nigeria is very good at making brilliant economic policies but we have identified smugglers and dumpers as those who sabotage these policies and we have decided we will deal with them and the strategy we came up with is that we will not bother ourselves.” – Emefiele

CBN goes tough: While addressing stakeholders present at the consultative forum, Mr. Emefiele revealed that there is an agency responsible for border control. However, smugglers still find their way into the country. Hence, Emefiele revealed that the apex bank is all out to use the instrumentality of being the regulator for Nigerian Banks to provide all details about smugglers and dumpers.

“We would use the instrumentality of being the regulator for the banking system, to make sure that we get the banks to provide all details about these smugglers and dumpers, to provide investigation and if they are found culpable in economic sabotage bordering on dumping and smuggling in Nigeria.”

The Plan: The CBN stated that the essence of liaising with deposit money banks to obtain details of smugglers is to close all accounts of anyone, firm or organization found culpable. According to Mr. Emefiele, top managers in any organization involved in smuggling will also have their accounts blocked.

“We will not only block their accounts, but we will also close their accounts in all the Nigerian banks simultaneously. We will close the accounts of the owners of those companies and we will close the accounts of top management members of those companies because they know that their companies are involved in smuggling and they should not be supporting those keep and of things.”

On CBN’s 5-year plan: As part of the CBN’s 5-year agenda, Mr. Emefiele stated that creating enabling environment for investors in the private sectors will form part of the bank’s agenda.

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“We are here today as part of the engagement that we have planned, preparatory to the CBN releasing another five-year vision and agenda for the next tenure of the Governor of CBN. As you can see, we have at this session private sector leaders like Aliko Dangote, people in telecommunications, people in manufacturing, people in the IT sector, people in the agricultural sector and banking sector. All of them are represented.

“Basically, what we are saying here is that we want to give them the opportunity, I will use the word to vent their view about what they think the CBN, the monetary policy committee should be doing in the next five years to support the economy and indeed to support the growth of the economy.” 

While giving his remark at the forum, Africa’s richest man and Chairman of Dangote Group further spoke on the need for private sector partnerships with the government.

“Government needs to have a partnership with the private companies to access growth. It needs to encourage private sector investors so that they do not rely on oil to pay salaries.”

Source: CBN rolls out plans to stop smuggling, vows to block several bank accounts

By Bamidele Samuel Adesoji

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