Nigeria’s central bank plans to diversify its $33 billion in foreign exchange reserves away from the dollar by switching a tenth of the stockpile into yuan, underlining the momentum behind China’s drive to internationalise its currency.
“We are looking at anything to start with from 5 to 10 percent of our reserves,” central bank governor Lamido Sanusi said on Monday.
The central bank had already said that it was considering reducing its reliance on the dollar, which economists say accounts for the bulk of its $32.96 billion in reserves . The bank does not publish the currency composition of its assets.
But Sanusi, speaking to CNBC news by telephone from China, said Africa’s second-largest economy was not abandoning the dollar and euro. “They are going to remain an important part of our holdings,” he said.
Continue reading for more analysis of the decision. From what I’ve seen, CBN seems to be the first central bank to do this.
See also FT TIlt for more analysis.