Do Not Panic – Finance Minister Urges Nigerians In The Diaspora

Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun
Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun

The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, has urged Nigerians in the Diaspora not to panic as a result of the foreign exchange policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, assuring them that current value of the Naira was just temporary.

Adeosun said this during the 2016 Diaspora conference in Abuja, where she described Nigerians living abroad as a key part of the Nigerian community, adding that they have a key role to play at this critical time.

“The rate will need time to settle into a predictable path that will be driven by fundamentals. Typically with such adjustments, markets will overreact and later correct back down to a fundamentally driven level and the naira will be no exception,” she said.

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The minister explained that flexible exchange rates “will allow our currency to adjust based on fundamental and known drivers,” noting that “the recent Brexit announcement has seen the pound under pressure so it is a normal economic phenomenon and not a trigger for panic.”

“Nigeria is going to rebuild stronger with a more resilient and diverse revenue base and I believe that the currency will ultimately reflect this,” she said.

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Adeosun advised participants at the conference not to become so comfortable abroad that they forget or despise their roots.

The minister said that because of its large population, Nigeria can no longer afford to depend heavily on proceeds from the sale of crude oil and that government has taken significant steps to make other sectors of the economy more viable.

She called on Nigerian philanthropists in the diaspora to consider donating to the country in cash rather than in kind so as to boost job creation and discourage the importation of fake products.

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“Donating consumer items under the medical donations has created windows for the importation of expired drugs as well as drugs that are intended for resale. My personal appeal would be that, where the items are available in Nigeria and especially those that are manufactured in Nigeria please donate in cash rather than in kind,” Adeosun said.

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