The nation’s external reserves have fallen by $11.3bn from $48.4bn in May last year to $37.1bn as of May 27 this year, representing a 23.3 per cent drop.
The foreign reserves also declined by 2.62 per cent month-on-month to $37.14bn as of May 27, from $38.14bn a month earlier, according to the latest data from the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The reserved had witnessed a massive decline of $4.72bn between January and April.
The CBN data indicated that the external reserves had amounted to $42.85bn at the end of December 2013.
But owing to severe pressure, which the naira had faced in recent times, coupled with the pressure to meet the foreign exchange demand, the central bank had drawn down the reserves by 11 per cent to $38.13bn as of April 30, 2014.
The decrease in the reserves, it noted, was driven largely by the increased funding of the foreign exchange market in the face of intense pressure on the naira and the need to maintain stability.
In a bid to prevent the naira’s value from crashing, the CBN had offered a total of $6.4bn to foreign exchange dealers at its twice-weekly regulated auction within the first eight weeks of this year.
Also last year, the CBN defended the currency with approximately $26.6bn from the nation’s external reserves to save the local currency from devaluation.
The bank sold about $26.6bn to currency dealers in 94 Foreign Exchange Dutch Auctions between January and December 2013.
According to the data, the central bank sold about $19.8bn to currency dealers in 72 auctions through the Wholesale Dutch Auction System between January and September last year, while it offered $6.8bn to the dealers in 22 auctions through the Retail Dutch Auction System.