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FX Demand by Nigerians Studying in UK, U.S Pressures Naira

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Surging Foreign Exchange (FX) demand by Nigerian students studying abroad in places like the United Kingdom (UK) is adding to pressure on the Naira.

The number of student visa issued to Nigerians by the UK alone has increased from an annual average of about 8,000 visas as of 2020 to nearly 66,000 in 2022, which implies an eight-folds surge to about US$2.5 billion annually in study-related foreign exchange outflow to the UK alone.

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele made this known during an address on Friday 25th November, 2022 at the 57th Annual Bankers Dinner in Lagos.

It is against the backdrop of the worsening mismatch between foreign exchange market demand and supply, and the need to boost foreign exchange earnings that the CBN and the Bankers’ Committee initiated the RT200 programme in February 2022.

Market demand for both goods and invisible transactions has continued to increase under various uses in the face of dwindling supply of foreign exchange, Emefiele said.

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