* Says Nigerian economy strong despite COVID-19 pandemic
The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) announced on Monday that it has retained all the monetary policy parameters unchanged.
The CBN governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said during an online briefing at the end of the committee’s meeting in Abuja.
He said the monetary policy rate (MPR), popularly called lending rate, is left unchanged at 12.5 per cent.
The other parameters that were retained include the cash reserve requirement (CRR) at 27.5 per cent, Liquidity Ratio at 30 per cent and the Asymmetric Corridor at +200/-500 basis points around the MPR.
The CRR is the funds kept with the CBN as a minimum deposit a commercial bank must hold as reserves, which they cannot lend out to customers.
During its previous meeting in May, the committee decided to slash the lending rate from 13.5 per cent to 12.5 per cent to stimulate credit expansion to critical sectors of the economy, stimulate employment and revive economic activity for quick growth recovery from the impact of coronavirus.
Following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the CBN unveiled various stimulus packages, such as concessionary rates, loan restructuring, and targeted loans to agriculture, manufacturing and health sectors to spur economic recovery in the country.
At the briefing on Monday, the CBN governor said the MPC decided to retain all the monetary policy rates to allow the various intervention programmes time to take effect.
Reviewing the performance of the economy based on the impact of the CBN intervention programmes, Emefiele said the country’s banking system remains very strong and resilient.
He attributed the strength of the banking system to a highly regulated regime by the apex bank, which he said was committed to ensuring all the banks abide by the various prudential regulations established to guide their operations.