Fidelity Bank Plc, a leading Nigerian bank, has restated its readiness to continually support the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) efforts to improve diaspora remittances and foreign exchange (FX) inflows into the country.
Fidelity Bank CEO, Mrs. Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, made this known on Saturday at the inaugural edition of the Fidelity Diaspora Webinar Series in Lagos.
Mrs. Onyeali-Ikpe noted that the virtual event was part of concerted efforts to deepen engagement with Nigerian citizens’ resident abroad, providing them greater clarity on recent policy measures by the CBN and its attendant implications for diaspora investments.
Themed ‘The New CBN FX Policy and Positive Impact to Diaspora Investments in Nigeria’, the session had in attendance notable professionals including Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo; Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, who delivered a keynote address; and the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), Honorable Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
Other eminent personalities include the Chairman/President of African Export-Import Bank, Prof. Benedict Okey Oramah; Lead Faculty, Tekedia Institute, Prof. Ndubuisi Ekekwe; renowned Neurosurgeon and Chairman of RNZ Global, Prof. Olawale Sulaiman; founder, and chairman of BEN Television, Alistair Soyode, among others.
On his part, Vice President Osinbajo said that remittances from Nigerians in diaspora for several years exceeded Nigeria’s oil revenues. The Vice President was represented by Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Ms. Yewande Sadiku.
In his keynote address, Emefiele highlighted the benefits of the newly introduced “CBN Naira 4 Dollar Scheme,” an initiative aimed at incentivising senders and recipients of international money transfers.
The CBN governor explained that the new policy was expected to attract diaspora remittances through the official foreign exchange channels as well as support forex stability in Nigeria.
Speaking at the webinar, Oramah suggested ways to boost diaspora participation in the Nigerian economy through specialised funds and accounts that would encourage them to save their long-term funds in Nigeria.
“Africans and Nigerians can consider allowing special diaspora foreign currency accounts with higher interest rates than the US or Europe and with an inbuilt guarantee against potential losses from bank failures and country risks,” he added.