Daily Champion (Lagos)

7 February 2011

Nigeria: Foreign Reserves Falls U.S.$33.12 Billion in January

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said Nigeria's foreign exchange reserves dropped slightly to $33.12 billion by the end of January from $33.53 billion two weeks earlier and remain down more than a quarter from a year ago.

Daily Champion recalls that the nation's foreign reserves had declined over the past 12 months despite rising oil prices and production, raising concerns about government spending in the run-up to April elections.

They are now 27 percent below year-ago levels.

The government has said the decline is partly due to spending to maintain a stable naira currency in the face of higher dollar demand, as well as spending on the power sector and seed capital for a planned sovereign wealth fund.

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