Commercial banks list requirements to access forex

Following the new Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s policy which mandated commercial banks in the country to sell forex to deserving customers, banks have come out with fresh requirements for their customers to access Foreign Exchange (forex).

Commercial banks are sending letters to their customers outlining the requirements for Forex exchange access, especially for those travelling outside the country and requiring PTA and BTA.

One of the commercial banks, Ecobank in its letter titled FX Rules for PTA and BTA, listed a valid Nigerian passport and a valid visa to an international destination as one of the requirements for forex access.

The letter reads: “Only Valid Travel Documents Shall be Accepted: Your ticket must be to an international destination outside of West Africa and Cameroun. You are required to provide an international return ticket, with a travel date not more than 14 days from the date of PTA/BTA purchase.

“You Can Only Apply for PTA/BTA Once in a Quarter: PTA and BTA requests are limited to a maximum of $4,000 and $5,000 per quarter per applicant respectively.

“Unutilized PTA/BTA: Customers are required to return purchased PTA/BTA to their bank within two (2) weeks from the date of purchase if not utilized for the intended purpose or if for any the scheduled trip is canceled.

“Application on Behalf of a Third Party is not Allowed: Do not Apply on Behalf of a Third Party. FX will only be sold directly to applicants who shall be Nigerians who are 18 years and above and have a valid Bank Verification Number (BVN).

“False Application and Use of Fake Documents Prohibited: False application and use of fake documents to purchase PTA/BTA is strictly prohibited and is a financial crime punishable under the applicable laws in Nigeria. Defaulters of this FX policy may face sanctions that include being barred from accessing FX from the official FX market in the future, restrictions on their bank accounts for such periods as may be determined by the CBN as well as possible criminal prosecution,” the letter concluded.