The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced that it has placed a ban on the importation of maize and will no longer issue foreign exchange (forex) for the importation of the cereal.
The Apex bank made this known to the general public on Monday via a circular signed by its Director, Trade, and Exchange Department, Dr. O.S Nnaji.
According to the CBN, it initiated the move to increase local production of maize and stimulate rapid economic development.
The Bank in its memo ordered the discontinuation of Form M processing, while already registered forms were to be submitted before Wednesday, July 15.
Form M is a document used by the CBN and Ministry of Finance to monitor imported goods as well as enable the collection of import duties.
“As part of effort by the Central Bank of Nigeria to increase local production, stimulate a rapid economic recovery, safeguard rural livelihoods and increase jobs, which were lost as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, authorised dealers are hereby directed to discontinue the processing of Form M, for the importation of maize/corn with immediate effect
“Accordingly, all Authorised Dealers are hereby requested to submit the list of Forms M already registered for the importation of Maize/Corn using the attached format on or before the close of business on Wednesday, July 15, 2020,” the memo read.
The new CBN order is coming on the heels of the complaints of several stakeholders who have condemned the continued importation of agricultural commodities.
However, since the move to close Nigerian borders to agricultural items, by the Federal Government, the price of the cereal has skyrocketed- a situation warranted by a supply deficit.
The situation has also had an adverse effect on poultry farmers who have decried the rising prices of poultry feeds, AgroNigeria reported.