28 September 2013, Abuja – The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, says it will start applying charges on withdrawals and deposits above N500,000 for individuals and N2 million for corporate bodies from Oct. 2.
Mr Tunde Lemo, Deputy Governor, Operations, said this while briefing newsmen at the end of the Special Forum on Financing the Power Sector Reforms for Economic Development.He said that the action would ensure effective implementation of the cashless policy.
The CBN had given a three-month moratorium for the full implementation of charges to customers who withdraw or deposit money higher that what was stipulated in the Cashless policy document.
“We will start applying the charges from the second of October which is Wednesday because the three months moratorium would have expired.
“We are glad to announced that having worked with stakeholders, we’ve been able to ramp up facilities in Abuja and five other locations and then we are set to build up the critical mass requirement in the cashless in those areas.’’
Lemo said that from Oct. 2, any customer that deposited above N500, 000 per day would be charged two per cent payment on it while withdrawal would attract three per cent charge.
“For corporate, the threshold is N2 million, if you deposit or withdraw any money above the threshold per day, if it is deposit, it will attract three per cent charges and if it is withdrawal it attracts five per cent.
“Those are the charges that are already applicable in Lagos area that we are now bringing to this location.”
He said that customers needed not to pass through the onerous task of depositing and withdrawal over the counter but advised the use of electronic fund transfer.
He said that electronic payment in Lagos accounted for 70 per cent to 80 per cent of high value transactions on daily basis.
Lemo said that the NIBSS Instant Payment (NIP) driven by Nigerian Inter Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), together accounted for three times the volume of cheques used in transactions.
On Connectivity of Point of Sales (POS) and efficiency of Automated Teller Machines (ATM), he said that the apex bank was working with the Telecoms to expand the bandwidth for service delivery.
“Now, we are also working with other service providers to provide the roaming facility.
“What will happen is that if you have a POS that is linked with MTN, if MTN is not working, it can then roam to hit other service provider and then settlement will be done at the end of the day.
“We are going to see a lot better connectivity in the next couple of weeks in those areas.’’
He said that POS availability had been increased in Abuja and five other locations by five folds between January and September with the available statistics.
Lemo said that before the introduction of the cashless policy in Nigeria, only two per cent of retail transactions were done electronically, but noted that in one year, it had gone up to 20 per cent.