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Just In: CBN Reduces Electronic Transfer, ATM Withdrawal Charges

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reviewed downward electronic transfer and ATM fees as well as card maintenance fees.

The new charges were contained in the latest Guide to Charges by Banks and Other Financial Institutions just released by the CBN

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According to the CBN, bank customers will now pay N10 for electronic transfers below N5,000, and N25 for electronic transfer between N5,000 and N50,000. Only electronic transfer above N50,000 will attract N50 charge.

This Guide, which replaces the Guide to Charges by Banks and Other Financial Institutions issued in 2017, takes effect from January 1, 2020, and maybe reviewed from time to time to reflect changes in the business environment.

The CBN, therefore, urged financial services providers and their customers alike to acquaint themselves with the provisions of the Guide and be properly guided accordingly.

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Previously, bank customers pay N50 charge for electronic transfers below N500,000.

Further, the CBN in the new Guide to Bank Charges slashed charges for cash withdrawal via Other bank’s ATM to “maximum of N35 after the third withdrawal within the same month” from “N65 after the third withdrawal within the same month”.

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The CBN also removed Card Maintenance Fee (CAMF) on all cards linked to current accounts, a maximum of one Naira per mille for customer induced debit transactions to third parties and transfers or lodgments to the customers’ account in other banks on current accounts only,

Commenting on the new charges, Director, Corporate Communications, CBN, Isaac Okorafor, explained that the current NIP charges apply to use of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), purchase with cash-back will attract a charge of N100 per N20,000 subject to cumulative N60,000 daily withdrawal. Also, for cards linked to savings account, a maintenance fee has been reduced to a maximum of N50 per quarter from N50 per month amounting to only N200 per annum instead of N600.

Furthermore, he said that there will be no more charges for reactivation or closure of accounts such as savings, current and domiciliary accounts while status enquiry at the request of the customer (like confirmation letter, letter of non-indebtedness and reference letter) will now attract a fee of N500 per request.

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On Current Account Maintenance Fee (CAMF), the Guide expressly stated that this would be applicable only to current accounts in respect of customer-induced debit transactions to third parties and debit transfers/lodgments to the customer’s account in another bank. It emphasized that CAMF is not applicable to Savings Accounts.

According to the Director, the CBN carried out the review of the Guide, which also prescribes charges permissible for Other Financial Institutions and non-bank financial institutions, in order to align with market developments.

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To guard against excess, unapproved or arbitrary charges by banks and other financial institutions, the Guide stipulates a penalty of N2,000,000 per infraction or as may be determined by the CBN from time to time for financial institutions that breach any provision of the guide.

The Guide also emphasized that failure by any bank to comply with CBN’s directive in respect of any infraction shall attract a further penalty of N2,000,000 daily until the directive is complied with or as may be determined by the CBN from time to time.

Consequently, the CBN directed banks to log every complaint received from their customers into the Consumer Complaints Management System (CCMS) in addition to generating a unique reference code for each complaint lodged, which must be given to the customer. Failure to log and provide the code to the customer, it added, amounts to a breach and is sanctionable with a penalty of N1,000,000 per breach.

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The charges prescribed in the Guide were arrived at after extensive consultations with stakeholders and is expected to enhance flexibility, transparency and competition in the Nigerian banking industry.

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(Vanguard)

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[JUST IN] Fuel Scarcity: DSS Gives NNPC, Oil Marketers 48 Hours To Make Product Available

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has given the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited and oil marketers a 48-hour ultimatum to make Premium Motor Spirit, known as petrol, available for Nigerians.

This was disclosed on Thursday by Peter Afunanya, the Spokesman for DSS, while briefing journalists at its office in Abuja after a closed-door meeting with stakeholders in the petroleum sector.

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He stated that NNPC assured during the meeting that it has sufficient product to serve Nigerians during and after the Yuletide season.

He said the DSS would activate its operations across the country if they failed to comply with the directive.

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Afunanya also lamented the challenge of fuel scarcity, noting that it has assumed a dimension that is harmful to the security of the country.

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Group Knocks CBN Over New Withdrawal Limits, Says New Policy Can’t Work

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Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), on Wednesday, criticised the Central Bank of Nigeria over its weekly cash withdrawal limits, saying the measure cannot help the worsening depreciation of the naira.

HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement, said the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele is chasing shadows having crippled Nigeria’s economy with poor fiscal policies in his about 10-year regime at the apex bank.

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The group said rather than coming up with experimental and needless policies like the redesigning of the naira, cash withdrawal limits, amongst others, the apex bank and the Federal Government should cut down foreign loans and reduce Nigeria’s worsening external debt burden which has been said by experts to be the dominant cause of naira depreciation against the United States dollar.

HURIWA further said the daily maximum withdrawals via point of sale (PoS) terminal of N20,000 will force thousands of Nigerians who are PoS operators out of jobs, when the policy takes effect nationwide from January 9, 2023.

The group faulted the policy as bad for a country with 21.09% inflation rate, 133 million people in multidimensional poverty, and unemployment rate of over 33% meaning over 23 million employable Nigerians are jobless.

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READ ALSO: Naira Redesign: CBN Issues New Cash Withdrawal Policy

The CBN on Tuesday directed Deposit Money Banks and other financial institutions to ensure that weekly over-the-counter cash withdrawals by individuals and corporate entities do not exceed N100,000 and N500,000, respectively. The apex bank also pegged the maximum cash withdrawal per day via PoS terminals and Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) at N20,000, saying that only the N200 denomination will be loaded into the ATMs.

The CBN noted that the new policy is sequel to the launch of the redesigned N200, N500 and N1,000 notes by President Muhammadu Buhari on November 23, 2022.

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Commenting, HURIWA’s Onwubiko said, “The CBN under its current governor, Godwin Emefiele has gone bananas. The apex bank can’t boost the value of the naira, it can’t remit over $550m trapped funds belonging to foreign airlines, forcing many of them to stop flight operations to the country. Manufacturers are also groaning and many dying or relocating from Nigeria because of inaccessibility to forex.

“It banned the supply of forex to Bureau de Change, among others and now, it has introduced limits for withdrawals that makes Nigeria look like a communist economy. Yet, the naira continues to plunge unprecedently against the dollar. Emefiele should be dismissed, he has exhausted his shallow experimental yet resultless policies.

“It is on record that the value of naira to dollar fell from N196.92 in June 2015 to N414.72 in June 2022, worsening Nigeria’s foreign debt burden. Under President Buhari and Emefiele, the naira depreciated by 52.52 per cent against the US dollar, even as the country’s total external debt rose from $10.32bn as of June 30, 2015, to $40.06bn as of June 30, 2022, a whopping increase of 288.18 per cent in seven years!

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“The next CBN governor after Emefiele’s sack should borrow the wisdom of the World Bank which advised that to achieve price stabilisation of the naira, the local currency should be allowed to respond to real pressures, and not be bottled up by the CBN.

“Emefiele’s successor should also advise the Federal Government to heed experts’ advice to move away from reliance on foreign assistance to finance developmental projects in the region as means to strengthen the naira.”

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Naira Redesign: CBN Issues New Cash Withdrawal Policy

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The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has issued a revised cash withdrawal policy, stating that cash withdrawals above N100,000 and N500,000 will henceforth attract 5 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively, as a measure towards implementing the naira redesign policy.

Also, the apex bank disclosed that Automated Teller Machines, ATM will dispense N200 and below denominations only from now on.

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DAILY POST learnt this in a letter signed by CBN’s director of banking supervision, Haruna Mustafa, to all Deposit Money Banks, other financial institutions, primary mortgage banks and microfinance banks on Monday.

According to the letter referenced with the BSD/DIR/PUB/LAB/015/069, a third-party cheque above N50,000 will not be eligible for payment Over the counter, OTC, and maximum ATM withdrawal shall be N20,000 per day.

It added that the maximum cash withdrawal via the point of sale (PoS) terminal should be N20,000.

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“The maximum cash withdrawal over the counter (OTC) by individuals and corporate organizations per week shall henceforth be N100,000 and N500,000, respectively.

“Withdrawals above these limits shall attract processing fees of 5% and 10%, respectively; third-party cheques above N50,000 shall not be eligible for payment over the counter, while extant limits of N10,000,000 on clearing cheques still subsist; the maximum cash withdrawal per week via Automated Teller Machine (ATM) shall be N100,000 subject to a maximum of N20,000 cash withdrawal per day; Only denominations of N200 and below shall be loaded into the ATMs; The maximum cash withdrawal via point of sale (PoS) terminal shall be N20,000 daily and in compelling circumstances, not exceeding once a month, where cash withdrawals above the prescribed limits are required for legitimate purposes, such cash withdrawals shall not exceed N5,000,000 and 10,000,000 for individuals and corporate organizations,” the letter stated.

READ ALSO: Naira Redesign: Buhari, Emefiele Played Nigerians, Only Changed Dye Of Currency – Sowore

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The CBN had on October 26 made known its plan to redesign 200, 500 and 1000 naira denominations. It gave December 15, 2022, as the date to start circulating the new notes, while it plans to stop the usage of old naira notes from January 31, 2023.

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