Cost of building materials still high despite fall of dollar

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The prices of building materials have not reduced despite the appreciation of naira at the foreign exchange market.

According to NAN, traders are complaining that they purchased commodities when the exchange rate was at one dollar to over N500.

Peter Okechukwu, who sells iron rods, said he bought the materials when naira was N520 to the dollar.

Okechukwu said although the naira was appreciating in value against major international currencies, he would not sell the products below the cost price.

“It is good a thing that the naira is gaining strength against the dollar but I have to sell my products to make some gain,” he said.

Gabriel Okereke, another trader, said he had not made any sales in the past two days because people expected the prices of goods to drop immediately.

He said prices that can not happen at the moment because the traders needed to sell off their old stocks which they brought when the naira had low value.

“I have some products in my warehouse which I believe I will sell before the prices of things will go down,” he said.

Polycarp Nzeli, who sells different types of building materials, said before the end of the month, the prices of goods would drop.

Nzeli appealed to people to show understanding with traders, explaining that most of their items were purchased in December and January 2017, when the value of the naira was low.

Moses Ibanga, a customer, said he felt the progress in the foreign exchange market would have effect on the prices of goods.

Ibanga said he would wait till prices dropped considering that building materials were not like foodstuff that perished in a short time.

“I will suspend my building work till the prices of things come down, I believe by April, we will smile again,” he said.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) adjusted its foreign exchange policy to increase liquidity in the foreign exchange market.

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