Friday, 30 December 2016

PRICES OF GOODS LIKELY TO INCREASE AS CBN FAILS TO PRINT LOWER NAIRA DENOMINATIONS IN ONE YEAR

 The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has not printed the small naira denominations for about a year, causing the scarcity of the notes in the economy, an investigation by the News Agency of Ni­geria (NAN) has revealed.

Sources at the CBN hint­ed that for a year now, the apex bank did not award contract for the printing of the notes such as N5, N10, N20 and N50 usually done abroad. It was gathered that the recently printed notes in circulation, N200, N500 and N1,000 were pro­duced by the Nigeria Secu­rity Printing and Minting plc (NSPM).

NSPM produces cur­rency notes and coins for the CBN and a wide range of security documents for the federal, state and lo­cal government establish­ments, commercial banks and blue chip companies. According to the NSPM website, the company has the ability to print over 40 million notes weekly.

However, the sources said the high cost of print­ing banknotes was the reason the apex bank did not give contracts for their production.

“The cost of printing N50 is almost the same as N1,000. Printing small denominations costs more than the value and with the present economic situa­tion, it makes sense to print higher notes which can be done locally by NSPM,” the source said.

A worker at the First Bank of Nigeria Limited told NAN that throughout the 2016 fes­tive seasons, there were hardly smaller currency notes to give to customers.

“We usually request for cash from the CBN through our Cash Man­agement Centre, but re­cently, we have not been able to get mints of N100 and below. We had N50 at one point but it wasn’t in the quantity we are used to getting. We have been telling our customers who call to request for mints that the smallest currencies they can get is N200,” he said.

Mr. Jude Ndukwe, a Political Economist, said the implication of the situation was that prices of goods were likely to increase since there were no smaller currencies in circulation. (Authority)