Saraki asks CBN to review forex policy

Senate President Bukola Saraki says the Senate has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)to review its forex policy.

He made the disclosure yesterday while assuring Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde that the senate is expanding Nigeria’s tax base.

He said, “After series of engagements with SME owners who are affected by the current CBN policy on forex, the Senate have advised CBN to review,” he said.

Speaking at a meeting with Lagarde, Saraki described the IMF’s visit  as “very auspicious as we begin to deliberate on the 2016 appropriation bill” in the face of failing oil prices.

“Here at home, the effect of the low oil prices on government revenue is challenging us to think out of the box in funding the repair of infrastructure, boosting employment, and securing our borders and people.

“These are no mean tasks and we welcome the support of our friends in this trying period.

“Our economic fundamentals remain robust and the economy is resilient to absorb the current oil price shock. The situation is bringing out the entrepreneurship in us.

“We have also set in motion activities towards reforming our oil and gas industry through legislative initiatives in order to meet international best practices.

“Engaging with our people the issues we strongly made here of forex – to do business. This is expected – what IMF can do to bridge the gap.

“The purpose of our legislative agenda is to enable us focus our lawmaking in areas that will help create jobs, expand our infrastructure base and make our economy work for the benefit and happiness of the majority of our people.

“In collaboration with major stakeholders, the 8th Senate is presently signing a memorandum of understanding on ‘Enhancing Nigerian Advocacy for Better Business Environment Project’, a National Assembly business and investment roundtable initiative, with developmental organizations.”

Saraki assure the IMF that the national assembly is committed to working closely with the executive in addressing the challenges facing the Nigerian economy.

“Diversifying and modernizing our economy; we will support the executive with legislation where necessary to give confidence to investors.

“Blocking revenue leakages: We are assiduously working towards blocking identified legal loopholes on revenue leakages and expanding our tax base.

“Conducive business environment: We are giving priority to legislation aimed at providing a more conducive business environment in general and reducing the cost of doing business in Nigeria; and

“Ending Impunity and reducing corruption: The National Assembly more than ever before, is working at improving its oversight systems to expose corruption wherever it may be, and providing better legal frameworks to entrench the rule of law and end impunity.”

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