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Reps Probe Use Of Refineries’ Maintenance Funds

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Reps Probe Use Of Refineries' Maintenance Funds

A comprehensive audit of all funds previously made available for the rehabilitation and maintenance of the Port Harcourt Refinery and other refineries in the country is to be undertaken by the House of Representatives.

The House is also to examine the performance bond, assurance, warrantees and guarantees put in place for operating and maintaining the Port Harcourt Refinery plants after commissioning while asking the Federal Government to grant licence and provide incentives for the building and construction of modular refineries by interested persons.

This followed a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by Hon. Onofiok Luke (PDP, Akwa Ibom) on the need to ensure transparency and accountability on the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries which have been moribund for several years leading to the importation of refined products into the country.

READ ALSO: JAMB Releases Timetable For 2021 Exams

Leading the debate on the motion Hon. Luke drew the attention of the lawmakers to the recent approval of $1.5 billion, about N575 billion, for the immediate commencement of rehabilitation of the 32-year-old Port Harcourt Refinery at an estimated completion period of 44 months (approximately – 4 years) with a three- component funding from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), budgetary allocations provisions, and Afreximbank.

According to him, the refinery which has two components of the old plant commissioned in 1965 that can process 60,000 barrels (9,500 m3) per stream day, and the new plant commissioned in 1989, with an installed capacity of 150,000 barrels (24,000 m3) per stream day have been dormant for several years.

The Akwa Ibom lawmaker expressed concern that even though the NNPC has allegedly spent about $25 billion in the turnaround maintenance of refineries in the past 25 years, this latest prevailing development is coming after promises by the current administration that government would no longer spend on the facility.

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BREAKING: CBN Increases Weekly Cash Withdrawal Limits

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BREAKING: CBN Increases Weekly Cash Withdrawal Limits

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Wednesday reviewed upwards the maximum weekly limit for cash withdrawal across all channels by individuals and corporate organisations to N500,000 and N5 million respectively.

The apex bank stated this in a circular issued Wednesday evening.

In an earlier circular it issued on December 6, the CBN had said that with effect from January 9, 2023, the maximum cash withdrawal over the counter by individuals and corporate organisations per week, will be N100,000 and N500,000 respectively, adding that withdrawals above these limits would attract processing fees of 5 per cent and 10 per cent respectively.

READ ALSO: New CBN Policy Imposes Penalties On Withdrawal Above N100,000, N500,000

It further stated that maximum cash withdrawal per week via Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), from January 9, will be N100,000 subject to a maximum of N20,000 cash withdrawal per day.

The apex bank also directed banks to load only N200 and lower denominations into their ATMs.

In addition, the CBN announced that maximum cash withdrawal via Point of Sales (PoS) terminals), from January 9, will be N20,000 daily.

 

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Buhari To Borrow N1tr From CBN, Seeks N819.5b Supplementary Budget

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Buhari To Borrow N1tr From CBN, Seeks N819.5b Supplementary Budget

President Muhmmadu Buhari has informed the House of Representatives that the government will take another N1 trillion loan from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) through ways and means.

He said the additional N1 trillion would take the total obligation to CBN to N23 trillion which the government seeks to convert to bonds.

The letter was referred to Committees on Finance, Banking and Currency, Loans, Aid and Grant.

Buhari also asked the House of Representatives to approve N819.5 billion supplementary budget for 2022.

In a letter read by Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila on Wednesday, President Buhari said the budget would be financed with new domestic borrowing.

READ ALSO: Debt Profile Under Buhari Worrisome – CBN

He noted that if the supplementary budget was approved, it would take a total deficit in 2022 to N8.17 trillion.

Buhari explained that the country decided to explore a supplementary budget because of the impact of flood and the need to complete major roads that were at 85% completion.

“The president writes that 2022 has witnessed the worst flood incident in recent history which has caused massive destruction of farmlands at a point already close to harvest season, this may compound the situation of food security and nutrition in this country,” the letter reads.

He added that “The flood also devastated the road infrastructure across the 36 states and the FCT. It has affected several sections of major roads and bridges nationwide that are critical to the movement of goods and services. The water sector was equally affected by the flood, and there is a need to complete some ongoing projects that have achieved 85% completion across the country.”

The letter was referred to the House Committee on Appropriation for further legislative action.

 

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Why We May Withdraw Banks’ Foreign Exchange Dealership Licences – CBN

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Emefiele Sick, Can't Meet With Reps - CBN

Miffed by the violation of its diaspora remittance rules, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has threatened to revoke banks’ foreign exchange dealership licenses.

The CBN’s warning was contained in a circular by the Director, of the Trade and Exchange Department, Ozoemena Nnaji, that waa published on Monday.

In a bid to boost diaspora remittances, especially through the banking system, the CBN, in November 2020 circular to banks, had directed that beneficiaries of such remittances should be paid in dollars through the designated banks of their choice.

However, the apex bank, noted that some International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) engage in illegal activities through banks in violation of this directive, by paying diaspora remittances in Naira.

The circular stated: “The attention of the CBN has been drawn to the increasing illegal activities by Money Transfer Operators in Nigeria, through banks, by terminating payments in Naira contrary to extant regulations.

‘This unwholesome practice has some banks partnering with unlicensed international money transfer operators who disguise their transactions and terminate the same via local inter-bank transfers.

“Henceforth, any bank found to be aiding and abetting any IMTO or unlicensed operator in this activity would be appropriately sanctioned.

READ ALSO: New CBN Policy Imposes Penalties On Withdrawal Above N100,000, N500,000

“We also wish to remind all banks that it is their responsibility to not only Know their Customers (KYC requirements) but also Know their customers’ business (KYCB. requirements).

“For the avoidance of doubt, all banks and IMTOs are to pay out proceeds of diaspora remittance only in US Dollars and comply with the guidelines on International Money Transfer Operations published by the Bank.

“Any bank found to be aiding/collaborating with IMTOs in terminating remittances in naira will have their authorised dealership licence withdrawn.”

 

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