CBN urges Nigerians to embrace, enjoy benefits of digital payment channels

*The Central Bank of Nigeria says the banking sector regulator continuously seeks creative ways to ensure that Nigerian consumers take full advantage of benefits of digital payment channels as obtained in the global financial ecosystem

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

As consumers gradually adjust to the cashless economy cum digital payments regime in line with the Naira redesign policy, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has urged Nigerians to embrace alternative payment channels.

ConsumerConnect reports these alternative channels include the CBN’s eNaira, USSD and other Internet banking platforms in line with its cashless policy the banking regulator.

The Bank also noted the idea had become necessary as Nigeria and Nigerians embraces the alternative payments policy regime, which it stated is the trend all over the world.

Dr AbdulMumin Isa, Acting Director of Corporate Communications at CBN,  stated this during CBN’s Special Day Friday, March 31, 2023, at the ongoing 34th Enugu International Trade Fair in Enugu, Enugu State.

Isa said that the West African country could not afford to be left behind in the global financial ecosystem, but rather embrace digital payment channels.

The CBN Spokesman, represented by Mr. Imo Esu, Assistant Director, Communications Department of the Bank, said CBN had continued to seek creative ways to ensure that Nigeria took full advantage of opportunities and benefits of digital payment channels.

According to the Bank, this development led to the launch of eNaira October 2021.

The digital financial inclusion initiative, the CBN stated, is aimed at broadening the payment possibilities of Nigerian consumers, with potential for fast-tracking inter-governmental and social transfers in the economy.

“Similarly, the CBN in collaboration with the Nigerian Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), recently launched the National Domestic Card Scheme – the first in Africa.

“This is expected to not only lower operating costs for banks but reduce the huge Foreign Exchange (Forex) costs associated with operating foreign card schemes,” said Isa.

Naira redesign for over interest of economy

Expatiating on the benefits of the currency redesign policy of the CBN, the Acting Director of Corporate Communications restated the policy is in the overall interest of the country and the economy, in addition to aligning with the international best practice.

He further explained that in all, the Naira redesign policy has started strengthening macroeconomic fundamentals, moderating inflation, and upscaling the financial inclusion rate in Nigerian ecosystem.

Isa stated: “It has also led to relative stability in the exchange rate and supported the efforts of the security agencies in combating banditry and ransom-taking in the country.”

Earlier in his welcome address, Mr. Jasper Nduagwuike, President of Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA), applauded the various intervention schemes of CBN in supporting and encouraging the growth of businesses in various sectors of the country’s economy.

Nduagwuike, represented on the occasion by Emma Nwankpa, Vice-President, Publication and Publicity, urged CBN to fine-tune policy measures to save indigenous businesses and industrial sectors of the economy.

The ECCIMA President also expressed the Chamber’s worry over the CBN’s recent increase in interest rate to 18 percent.

He noted that the development would have an adverse effect on accessing credit from commercial banks in the country.

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