The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on December 20, 2019 released two (2) regulatory guidelines- a revised Guide to Charges by Banks, other financial and non-bank financial institutions, to replace the one issued in May 2017, and Consumer Protection Regulations to implement the principles prescribed in the Consumer Protection Framework issued in November 2016.
The revision of the Guide to Charges and strengthening of the Consumer Protection Regulation was necessitated by continued evolution in the financial industry over the past few years, which has spurred innovation and the introduction of new products, channels and/or participants. These developments have made it imperative for continued vigilance by the regulatory authorities to ensure the protection of consumer rights as more individuals are financially included whilst encouraging market forces to increasingly drive pricing for financial products.
These innovations supported by a sound regulatory framework have indeed transformed the Nigerian financial landscape over the past decade which has driven financial inclusion (according to EFINA, financial inclusion increased to 63.2% as at December 2018 from 60.3% in December 2012) and the increased use of electronic payments across several channels by bank customers. Data from the Nigeria Inter Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) shows that POS transactions increased by 4,692% between 2012 and 2018 from N48.46 billion to N2.3 trillion while electronic transfers increased by 1,967% from N3.8 trillion to N80.42 trillion. Paper based cheque transactions declined by 32% from N7.48bn to N5.03bn.
Similarly, statistics from NIBSS on electronic transfers from June to November 2019 show that number of transfers below N10,000 accounted for 61% of the number of electronic transfer transactions. This is a confirmation that that the reduction of the charges for micro-payments has huge potential for financial inclusion.
The revised Guide to Charges is thus yet another move by the CBN to build an inclusive banking system that adequately caters for the needs of the banking public whilst preserving the financial sustainability of banks, other financial and non-bank financial institutions. The Guide will incentivize stakeholders, especially those making micro payments, to further embrace electronic banking channels, thus improving financial inclusion. It will also reduce cost of banking services to customers to deepen access without much impact on bottom line of regulated institutions under the purview of the Bank.
Some of the changes introduced in the revised Guide include:
- Charges for Electronic Transfers:
|Transaction Limits||Old Transfer Charges||New Transfer Charges|
|Transfer below N,5000||N52.50||N10.00|
|Transfer between N5,001 – N50,000||N52.50||N25.00|
|Transfer above N50,000||N52.50||N50.00|
- Charges for ATM Withdrawals:
|Description||Old withdrawal charges||New withdrawal charges|
|To be charged after every 3rd withdrawal in a month, on another bank’s ATM||N65.00||N35.00|
- Card Maintenance Charge:
|Account type||Old maintenance charges||New maintenance charges|
|Savings account||N50.00 monthly||N50.00 quarterly|
|Current account||N50.00 monthly||No charges|
With the implementation of this new policy, you can now carry out more transactions using all kinds of electronic channels (USSD, ATM, etc.)
Similarly, the Consumer Protection Regulations which are being released by the CBN alongside the revised Guide to Charges provides clarity on roles and responsibilities of all participants in the industry. It sets our minimum standards on fair treatment of consumers, disclosure and transparency, business conduct, complaint handling and redress in order to protect the rights of consumers, hold banks, other financial and non-bank financial institutions accountable and preserve trust in the entire financial system.
The revised guide to charges by Bank, Other Financial and Non-Banking Financial Institution took effect on January 1, 2020 and maybe reviewed from time to time to reflect charges in the business environment.
For more details click on the link https://t.co/AqxstYLJ4L?amp=1