• Wednesday, February 21, 2024
businessday logo


CBN tasks MFBs on 64 new customers monthly each

CBN disagrees with IMF on exchange rate policy as liquidity costs persist

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed all Microfinance Banks (MFBs) operating in the country to acquire 64 new customers per month.

The directive follows the revised national financial inclusion target that aims at accelerating progress towards the achievement of 80 percent financial inclusion target by the year 2020.

In a letter to all microfinance banks on the revised national financial inclusion target, Tokunbo Martins, director, other financial intuitions supervision department, noted that the CBN held a stakeholders’ forum for all financial service providers in the six geo-political zones in the first and second quarters of 2019 which was attended by representatives of the MFBs. The objective of the forum was to expose stakeholders in the financial inclusion agenda.

One of the major resolutions reached at the vent she said was the setting of a target for each branch of a microfinance bank to acquire 64 new customers per month.

This translates to 774 new bank accounts measured by new Bank Verification Number (BVN) registration per branch per year.

“Given the urgency of this task, it is important to cascade the target to your branches for their information and implementation”, Martins said.

Consequently, all MFBs are requested to implement the resolution and disseminate same to all their branches to ensure concerted efforts towards achieving the overarching target of 80 percent financial inclusion by the year 2020.

The National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) was launched in October 2012 and revised in 2018 with the major objective of increasing the percentage of adult Nigerians who own bank accounts and use formal financial services from the baseline figure of 46.3 percent in 2010 80 percent by 2020.

Over the last six years of implementation of the strategy, microfinance banks have contributed significantly towards the realisation of the stated objective.

As at the end of 2018, 63.2 percent or 63 million adult Nigerians were financially served leaving an inclusion gap of 36.8 percent or 63.6 million adult Nigerians that need to be included.

Given the short time to the end of the target date, Martins said it has become expedient for all stakeholders to double efforts towards the realisation of the targeted 80 percent inclusion rate.

However, the CBN has moved the financial inclusion target from 80 percent in the year 2020 to 95 percent in 2024.

Godwin Emefiele, governor of the CBN, the current enrolment of 38 million unique banking customers will be expanded to 100 million over the next 5 years. Ongoing partnership with NIMC will also enable integration between the two databases.