Naira’s Depreciation Forces Cross-Border Traders to Abandon Businesses

The Nigerian currency, the Naira, experienced a significant exchange rate fluctuation at the open market over the weekend, trading at N1,870 for CFA1000. This rate marked a depreciation from Thursday’s exchange value of N1,800 at the Seme-Krake border, one of the nation’s most frequented land borders located in the Badagry area of Lagos.

The persistent devaluation of the Naira has had a profound impact on cross-border commerce, compelling many traders to cease their operations. The ripple effect of the currency’s decline is evident in the soaring market prices of goods, including petrol, which now commands a record price of over CFA 1000 (approximately N2,010) per litre. The removal of fuel subsidies in May has further intensified the profitability of petrol smuggling activities.

In a related development, markets in Nigerien communities adjacent to Nigeria have begun conducting cash transactions predominantly in Naira due to a shortage of CFA francs. Daily Trust reports that the Naira is now widely used in provinces bordering the Nigerian states of Borno, Yobe, Kano, Katsina, and Sokoto, according to local residents and merchants. This shift underscores the broader economic implications of currency scarcity and trade dynamics in the region.

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