By Emman Ovuakporie and Levinus Nwagbuhiogu
ABUJA- GOVERNOR of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi has said there is need to re-visit the re-designing of the Naira to shore up the Nigerian economy.
Also, the CBN Governor said the Excess Crude Account is down by $7billion because of our high dependence on imports.
He also noted that interest rates in Nigeria cannot crash to a single digit because inflationary rate as at last month was 8.4percent.
Sanusi who made this disclosure at a meeting organised by the House committee on Banking and Currency said:
“It is a rare occurrence for counterfeits to be dispensed by ATM machines because the notes are processed.
“One of the reasons we wanted to have a restructuring of the redesign of the currency a few months ago was because as explained, many of our notes had been in existence for upward of eight or even ten years.
“Now best practice is that within a period of five to eight years you redesign the currency because after that period counterfeiters tend to catch up.
Sanusi explained further that “even at that, Nigerian notes in terms of what we see as counterfeit and processing, the percentage is very low.
“We had about 3.9 notes from a million notes 2007, 6 in a million notes in 2008, 8.4 pieces in one million in 2009, 7.4 pieces in 2010, 5.4 pieces in a million notes in 2011 and 8.4 pieces in 2012 of the notes processed were counterfeit.
“But with ATM machines it should not have happened because it has been processed and we would be very pleased to know if there are specifics about any bank so that we can draw their attention on the importance of processing them before putting them in ATM machines.”
“Now unfortunately the redesign suffered because of all the noise around N5,000 and therefore it is been delayed because that is what would have made it impossible for counterfeiters to cock so till they have to wait for another 5,6, 7 years before they learn how to counterfeit by which point , the CBN should be redesigning the notes again.
“So I suppose that at some point the country would have to revisit the issue of redesigning the notes but at the moment based on popular demands, we have had to step down the redesign.”
On interest rates, delivering a low rate of interest is the easiest thing for us to do because the CBN prints money and interest rates come down when you have a lot of money and that is not a problem.