Cashless Policy On Deposits, Withdrawals Will Progress As Announced – Emefiele

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Friday said there’s no going back on its implementation of the cashless policy on deposits and withdrawals in line with its mandate to ensure an efficient payment system.

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, spoke while briefing journalists shortly after the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting.

He also apologised to bank customers for the inconveniences the newly introduced cashless policy will cause.

“I sympathize and regret inconvenience cashless policy will cause bank customers. Cashless Policy is not intended to punish hardworking Nigerian businesses,” he said.

Emefiele said that contrary to claims in some quarters that many Nigerians would suffer the negative impact of the policy, only about five to ten per of bank customers would be affected.

CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele

He said if the Nigerian economy is to compete effectively with those of developed countries, then a payment system that encourages the use of other non-cash channel was desirable.

“The Policy is to encourage the use of electronic means of transaction and reduce but not eliminate cash based transactions.
“It is meant to discourage those merchants who insist on cash payments. They do not need to pay the deposit charge is they receive money electronically,” the CBN tweeted on Friday.

The House of Representatives had earlier on Thursday asked the apex bank to suspend the policy until it has made due consultations with all relevant stakeholders.

The lawmakers also resolved to mandate the House Committee on Banking and Currency to interface with the CBN “to ascertain the propriety, relevance and the actual need for the implementation of that aspect of the cashless policy at this time considering the prevailing economic situation of the country and to report back to the House within 4 weeks”.

Meanwhile, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted to hold all key policy rates constant at the end of its meeting which held on Thursday and today.

The benchmark interest rate (MPR) was held at 13.50%. The asymmetric corridor was retained at +200bps and -500bps around the MPR. The Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) was retained at 22.50%. The Liquidity Ratio was retained at 30.00%.

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