According to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, the e-naira recorded N8 billion worth of transactions in the first year after its launch. This was disclosed by the apex bank’s governor while speaking at a conference held in Lagos to commemorate the first anniversary of Nigeria’s own digital currency.
He also spoke on plans that would be introduced by the bank and the Bankers’ Committee to drive adoption and ensure that the cashless policy becomes ubiquitous in the country. He also did say that the central bank had spent a lot of money so far in bringing the e-naira project to where it is today.
The Governor said that “There has been overwhelming interest and encouraging response from Nigeriana and other parties across the world, with 33 banks fully integrated and live on the platform. N3 billion has been successfully minted by the bank, N2.10 billion issued to financial institutions, and about one million (919,000) customers onboarded.”
“Over 3,305 merchants have successfully registered on the e-naira platform across the country, including Shoprite, Sahad Stores, A.A. Rano fuel stations, Fraser Suites, and November Cubes, among others. Over 700,000 transactions amounting to about N8 billion have been recorded on the platform and over 2.5 million daily visits to the e-naira website,” he added.
He went on to address the apex bank’s plans to make Nigeria a fully cashless society. “Banks have incurred a lot of costs in an attempt to embrace a cashless economy. We also had collaborations with mobile networks and had payment service banks (PSBs) using all sorts of channels. The destination, as far as I am concerned, is to achieve a 100 percent cashless economy in Nigeria. I know that those who doubt will say that 100 percent is unattainable,” he said.
“I want to say we have provided all the needed infrastructure that will enable us to make cashless a nationwide journey. It is not something that some of us will like but in the coming weeks, and months make pronouncements that must make cashless go nationwide. I believe part of those pronouncements will begin from tomorrow and there will be some breaking news tomorrow. Even the bankers’ committee will hold a special bankers’ committee meeting tomorrow to deliberate on this,” he said asserting that the CBN had created a conducive enabling environment for cashless policies to thrive.
Earlier this year, the apex bank announced plans to cut the physical or paper version of the naira out of circulation to increase the adoption rate of the e-naira. The apex bank had also noted that the e-naira saves users from charges incurred from using financial outlets like ATMs and POS which are prone to hacks and other challenges.