Stakeholders in the agriculture sector of the economy have tackled President Muhammadu Buhari over his directive to the Central Bank of Nigeria not give foreign exchange to importers of food items. Some critics accused the president of taking the country back to the military era when directives are issued with military fiat.
The Presidential directive, according to others will also kill many factories. Mr Innocent Madumere, Manager at Erisco Foods, argued that the directive will have negative impact on the economy because the local manufacturers use Forex to raise capital for their businesses and “if they stop Forex the entire manufacturing sector will suffer”.
According to him, “apart from affecting our capital base, our production output will be drastically reduced. We, the manufacturers depend so much on Forex to source our raw materials and so this policy will affect us negatively.
This directive cannot be in the interest of local manufacturers because the local manufacturers of food items, especially the smaller players do not have enough capital to sustain their businesses and if government stops the forex it will adversely affect us. The CBN on its part does not help us either. Apart from not giving us any fund, the CBN does not give us loans at reasonable interest rate. They have a lot of terms and conditions which are not favourable to local manufacturers. I can assure you that this policy will lead to closure of some factories if it is not reversed”