The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says that non-oil exporters repatriated a total of 4.987 billion dollars into Nigeria in 2022.
Mr Godwin Emefiele (CON), Governor of the CBN disclosed this while delivering a keynote address at the second edition of the RT 200 Non- Oil Summit on Tuesday in Lagos.
The theme of the Summit is: “RT Non-Oil Export: The Journey So Far.”
Emefiele said that the 2022 figure was higher than the 3.190 billion dollars repatriated in 2021.
“Of this amount, only 1.966 billion dollars qualified for the rebate programme, while only 1.559 billion dollars was sold at the investors (I & E) window or for own use.
Emefiele said that the CBN has also paid out about N81 billion in rebates to hard-working Nigerian exporters.
“This is a testament to the resolve of the CBN to ensure quick acceleration of the export value chain in the country.
“I know there have been calls to make all exporters eligible for the rebate, not just limit it to finished and semi-finished products.
“While we see some justification for this, one of the goals of the RT200 program is to help quicken the process of industrialization and encourage exporters to earn more from their export business.
Economists have well-documented a positive relationship between export and industrialization,” Emefiele said.
The governor noted that export can transform the economic structure of countries from simple, slow-growing, and low-value activities to more productive activities that enjoy more significant margins driven by technology.
The apex bank chief said that all hands should be on deck to help exporters and the economy by adding value to what they produced and exported.
“ We are already getting feedback from banks of interest by exporters in adding value to the products they export to allow them to benefit from the programme.
“We are happy that this is happening, and we encourage more exporters to find ways to add value to their exports so that they can benefit not only from the scheme but get better value for their exports,” Emefiele said.
He gave his assurances that the bank is committed to strengthening and expanding foreign exchange supply into the market.
“You are all important in this national clarion call to expand the supply of foreign exchange to the country.
“For exporters flying the flag of Nigeria in the international market, the Bankers Committee and the CBN stand ready to partner with you to achieve your goals.
“You can benefit from the many financial programs introduced by the CBN through your bank to growing your business.
“Therefore, I call on this gathering to candidly interact and make constructive and innovative suggestions for exploring the non-oil export sector as a more sustainable means of increasing financial flows into the economy and generating employment to spur growth.
”Ladies and gentlemen, this is the time for all of us to work together to reposition Nigeria on a growth trajectory by taking the diversification of the economy seriously.
There is no time like now to start working in synergy for the good of our nation. We must coordinate and collaborate on policies to improve the economic activities in the non-oil sector,” Emefiele said.
Earlier, Emefiele said that the country was confronted with many challenges exacerbated by growing internal and external factors.
He said that a significant part of these challenges has been the over-dependence on crude oil as a major source of foreign exchange earnings to the economy, which the vagaries of oil prices and production dynamics have largely distorted.
He said that to address some of these challenges, the CBN has been implementing several non-conventional, supportive, and complementary macroeconomic policy actions toward restoring the economy to its growth trajectory.
“One of the most noble recent ideas was development of a market-based financing mechanism to boost non-oil sector capacity to attract foreign exchange flows.
”Consequently, with the support of the Banker’s Committee in February 2022, the CBN introduced the RT200 program, which is aimed at raising 200 billion dollars in foreign exchange earnings over the next 3-5 years, strictly from non-oil exports.
He said that many developing nations have since identified export as a leading priority for their indigenous firms.
He said that several countries have developed export-oriented trade strategies and extensive assistance programs to encourage export expansion.
He explained that Economists like Krueger, 1978, Bhagwati, 1978 and Feder, 1982, have shown that export promotion, especially in developing nations, is a superior development strategy for accelerating productivity, improving foreign exchange earnings, and achieving overall growth.
“ Against this backdrop, several developing nations embarked on aggressive export promotion to increase their productivity, improve their foreign exchange earnings, and increase their income level.
“Nigeria cannot be an exception particularly given the huge natural and material resources endowment she possesses.
“Therefore, it is not only appropriate but makes economic sense to embrace this policy trust that is well anchored on sound economic policy and proven economic theory.
“At the launch of this initiative, I promised that we shall be having a biannual conference to review our performance.
The first conference on the biannual Non-oil Export Summit was held in this hotel in June of this year with great enthusiasm from all stakeholders.
It aimed to improve the non-oil export process and remove some of the export value chain bottlenecks.
“This time, we will look at what we have achieved since the first summit and examine the result of the collaborative efforts by all stakeholders in the export value chain and areas for further improvement and collaboration.
He expressed gratitude to the Nigeria Export Promotion Council, NPA, and hardworking Nigeria exporters flying the Nigerian flag everywhere for making the programme a success.
According to him, in terms of processes and infrastructure for improving trade performance, we have recorded some achievements in automation and digitization of the trade processes.
He said that as of today, SONCAP, NAFDAC, and Marine insurance certificates are automated and fully integrated with the Trade Monitoring System.
He said that the bank was working with Quarantine Service to integrate their permits and certificates into the system, and very soon, the NPA eCall Up System would also be integrated. “Other enhancements have also been done with eNXP, including integration with SGD and the development of the PIA portal aimed at digitizing the process of issuing Clean Certificates of Inspection (CCIs) by PIAs and ease of scheduling of inspection by exporters.
“All these are made possible because of the interest shown and the commitment made by all of us gathered in this room and beyond.
The event was graced by the bankers committee, captains of industry and non-oil exporters.
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