Thursday, February 8, 2024

No More Dollars: Banks in Nigeria to Pay Customers' Money from Abroad in Naira

Nigerian banks have begun full implementation of the Central Bank of Nigeria's revised guidelines on international money transfer operations in the country.

The CBN released revised guidelines for the operations of International money transfer operators (IMTOs) and instructed banks to begin paying dollars and other foreign currency payouts from abroad in naira to boost forex supply and starve black market traders.

Part of the CBN circular reads: "All inbound money transfers to Nigeria shall be paid to beneficiaries in Naira through a bank account, or cash.

"Proceeds of IMTO more than the equivalent of $200 (KSh 32,100) shall be paid through an account. Cash payments shall be made upon the provision of a satisfactory/acceptable means of identification. “Where the beneficiary does not have an account with the IMTO agent bank, the agent bank shall credit the beneficiary account in another bank."

The apex bank also noted that the exchange rate for the naira payment shall be at the prevailing rate in the Nigerian foreign exchange market.

Banks begin full implementation.

In reaction to the new guidelines, Nigerian banks issued statements to their customers explaining the changes. Ecobank message to customers read:

"Dear valued customer, We would like to bring to your attention recent regulatory changes affecting international money transfers into Nigeria.

"With regards to the circular issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) dated January 31, 2024, all in-bound money transfers to Nigeria will be paid only in Naira through a bank account or in cash at the prevailing rate in the Nigerian Foreign Exchange Market. "Furthermore, transfers exceeding the equivalent of $200 must be credited to the recipient's bank account while cash payments for amounts below $200 will require an acceptable means of identification. The acceptable means of identification is listed as follows: International passport, Driver's license, National Identity card, INEC Permanent Voters Card (PVC)"

What CBK said on dollar bids In related news, the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) summoned commercial banks following the continued weakening of the shilling against the greenback. CBK governor Kamau Thugge met with commercial bank officials and senior staff from the Treasury on Monday, February 5.

The meeting aimed to persuade the industry players against setting aggressive dollar bids as Thugge assured banks of access to dollars. 

By Dave Ibemere, Legit

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