Reps Pass FOREX Mart Bill

By Kauthar Anumba-Khaleel

The House of Representatives were yesterday read for a second time, a bill for an act to repeal the foreign exchange.

The bill seeks to promote the effective regulation of the Nigeria financial industry with a view to promoting financial system stability under the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Act, 2007 and entrenching the deepening of financial markets, which requires the necessary legal framework to ensure that the goals of stability and growth are achieved.

Sponsor of the bill, Hon. Jones Chukwudi Onyereri entitled, “bill for an Act to Repeal the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, Cap. P34, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Re-enact the Foreign Exchange Act, 2017 to Establish a Foreign Exchange Market and to Provide for the Regulation, Monitoring and Supervision of the Transactions Conducted in the Market; and for Related Matters (HB. 1066)”.

In his lead debate, Onyeriri said the mono cultural nature of the economy has exposed the financial system to risks associated with the vagaries of movements in the foreign exchange rate and the nation’s reserves that may quickly results in systematic failure adding that this has made a review of this area of law imperative in light of the dynamic nature of the foreign exchange system.

Section 5 of the proposed bill amends the extant Act to provide for authorised dealers to render returns to the CBN which must include information as to the sources of funds above $10,000 while section 22 of the proposed bill restricts outward cash flow in a manner that no person shall export foreign currency cash in excess of $50,000 or its equivalent from Nigeria.

Also, Section 25(2) of the bill makes provision for extension of time within which authorised dealers issue certificates if capital importation and make returns to the CBN from 48 hours to 72 hours to reflect current realities and Section 29 of the bill provides for the operation of foreign currency domiciliary accounts by amending the extant Act to include the period and conditions for penalties upon failure to repatriate proceeds.

The bill was consequently referred to House committee on Banking and currency.

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