CBN to Convey MPC Meeting Monday March 23

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By Dipo Olowookere

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced its intention to hold its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting next week.

A statement issued by the central bank said the meeting, which is its 272nd, will take place on Monday, March 23, 2020 at 10:00am and Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at 8:00am.

According to the circular, venue of the two-day meeting is the MPC Meeting Room on 11th Floor, Wing C, of the CBN Corporate headquarters in Abuja.

The meeting will hold exactly a week after the apex bank announced some emergency polices aimed to help the economy scale through the crisis caused by the coronavirus.

The pandemic has caused global markets to tumble and yesterday, the central bank rolled out some measures, including trimming its intention funds interest rates to 5 percent from 9 percent.

It also announced a special fund of up to N50 billion for households and small and medium scale enterprises. It also extended the moratorium on its intervention funds by one year.

Governor of the CBN, Mr Godwin Emefiele, who made the announcement, also said, “The CBN hereby grants all deposit money banks leave to consider temporary and time-limited restructuring of the tenor and loan terms for businesses and households most affected by the outbreak of COVID-19 particularly oil & gas, agriculture, and manufacturing.”

As participants go into the MPC meeting next, one of the key issues on their mind would be the economy and ways to ensure things don’t go out of hands.

On Tuesday morning, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Nigeria’s inflation rose for another month, hitting 12.20 percent in February 2020 from 12.13 percent in January 2020.

At its last meeting, the benchmark interest rate was left at 13.50 percent and with inflation almost at par with the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR), observers will expect the committee to lower the rates.

Some days ago, the Senate vehemently kicked against the wide gap between the lending and deposit interest rates, calling for a review of the rates so as to stimulate the economy.

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