The amount of foreign exchange used for the payment of estacodes and Personal Travel Allowances to Ministries, Departments and Agencies as well as to fund Bureaux De Change operations was $3.95bn in 2019, according to the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The CBN, in the 2020 annual report of its Currency Operations Department released on Thursday, said the forex procured for the payment of estacodes and PTA to the MDAs as well as the funding of BDC operations dropped to $2.12bn last year.

“The receipt and authentication of foreign currency deposits by Deposit Money Banks reduced significantly due to the downturn in global trade in 2020,” it said.

The apex bank said it recorded a significant reduction in the volume and cost of forex procurement last year.

It said, “A total of $1,830.00m was procured over the course of 2020. This value represents a decrease of $2,120.00m or 53.67 per cent relative to the $3,950.00m procured in 2019.

“This was used to fund Bureaux De Change operations, payment of estacode and Personal Travel Allowances to Ministries, Departments and Agencies.”

The CBN said it used N538.59m to destroy unfit naira notes worth N698.59bn last year.

The report said, “The bank sustained banknotes disposal operations in 2020 to ensure the circulation of clean banknotes. In furtherance of this objective, it deployed 11 banknote destruction systems and three currency disintegrating systems for currency disposal activities in the period under review.

“At end-December 2020, a total of 1,514.66 million pieces (151,427 boxes) valued at N698.59bn was disposed, compared with 1,572.17 million pieces (157,217 boxes) valued at N814.44bn in 2019.

“The boxes and value of unfit notes disposed in 2020 decreased by 5,790 boxes and N1.12bn, respectively, below 157,217 boxes, valued at N814.44bn in 2019. The decrease was attributed to the suspension of disposal activities due to COVID-19 restrictions.”

“The sum of N538.59m was incurred on currency disposal activities in 2020, compared with N647.82m in 2019. This was N109.23m or 16.86 per cent lower than the cost in 2019,” it added.

The report said a total of 79,993 pieces of mutilated banknotes of various denominations valued at N52.82m was audited, disposed and replaced in 2020, compared with 865,775 pieces valued at N45.99m.

The CBN said to maintain the integrity of the banknotes in circulation, it sustained efforts at combating counterfeiting activities in 2020, in collaboration with security agencies.

It said a total of 67,265 pieces of counterfeit notes with a nominal value of N56.83m was recorded in 2020, compared to 84,934 pieces valued at N64.71m in 2019.

It said the N1,000 and N500 denominations constituted the bulk of counterfeited banknotes, accounting for 69.06 per cent and 30.79 per cent, respectively, of the total counterfeit notes.

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