Banks are beginning to see business opportunities in the recent move by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to reduce or even eliminate transaction charges (COT) from customers.
As competition intensifies in this crucial sector, bank CEOs believe that the move by the apex bank will help to grow the industry as well as deposit base of banks whose strategies target the unbanked populace.
In addition to boosting businesses and enhancing financial inclusion, as canvassed by the apex bank, Kehinde Durosinmi-Etti, group managing director/chief executive officer, Skye Bank plc, believes that “reduction in transaction charges will encourage the unbanked public to put their monies in bank. All that will translate to banks having more money with increased patronage.”
In an interactive session with financial journalists, Durosinmi-Etti noted, “What is driving CBN to reduce charges is financial inclusion and cashless policy. If the charges are high, banks will not utilise their e-platforms well.”
According to him, “There are a lot of people who don’t have access to banking services. To encourage them to put their monies in banks, they need to have access to low charges/rates. All these will translate to banks having more money with increased patronage. This will help to grow the industry and deposit base of banks.”
He noted that banks have recognised that the financial market is competitive today and are now giving their customers a lot of incentives.
Tunde Lemo, CBN deputy governor, operations, had disclosed that the regulator is uncomfortable with the current level of bank charges, and is looking at various charges to see how bankers can work together and agree, so that overall, the charges to customers are reduced and one of the areas they are looking into is actually to reduce the commission on turnover (COT).