The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced the opening of a special foreign exchange window for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) which will allow them to make purchases of up to $20,000 per quarter.

This can be viewed as part of the CBN's efforts to stimulate the Nigerian economy. The measure will also likely be welcomed by SMEs in the ICT sector too who were battling to import products or materials.

“The sum of $20,000 per SME customer per quarter can be effected by telegraphic transfer subject to completion of Form ‘M’ supported with proforma Invoice and the importer’s Bank Verification Number, BVN,” said Isaac Okorafor, Spokesperson at CBN.

The bank has highlighted that processing banks are to make sure that importers submit the relevant shipping documents not later than 60 days from the date of the transfer.

According to the CBN, an SME is a business with an asset base of between $16,000 and $1,600,000 (N5 million and N500 million), excluding land, as well as a staff complement of between 11 and 300 people.

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