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CBN increases approved IMTOs to 57


CBN increases approved IMTOs to 57

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By Emma Ujah, Abuja Bureau Chief

ABUJA — The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved additional 10 International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) to handle foreign exchange remittances by Diaspora Nigerians, raising the number to 57 The apex bank had on March 22, approved a list of 47 companies based mainly in Nigeria, Europe and America to handle such transactions.

According to the list posted on the bank’s website yesterday,   the IMTOs   based in the United kingdom increased from 17 to 21; while those in Lagos rose from 14 to 16.

One more IMTO was approved in the United States of America to make them nine, from the initial eight, while the   Abuja figure increased from three   to four.   

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One firm was approved in Australia, with two   Senegal and one each in Ibadan, Morocco and Belgium. The CBN recently banned unauthorized international money transfer operators from such transactions, warning that it would apply severe sanctions against them, if they remained adamant.

It also came up with a new policy to force IMTOs and Money Deposit Banks to pay recipients of remittances in foreign currencies, rather than the Naira. Until then, the IMTOs and banks were said to be shortchanging remittances beneficiaries, as they gave them less Naira equivalent of their foreign exchange sent to them by Nigerians in the Diaspora.

The practice was seen to have become a disincentive to Diaspora remittances, which led to the policy measures of the apex bank. CBN equally went a step further to grant a N5 /$1 incentive for remittances receivers, in order to further boost Diaspora remittances.

The governor of the CBN, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said recently that the policy had been effectively applied by other jurisdictions to increase Diaspora remittances and expressed that Nigeria would also witness a boost in remittances, going forward.

His words, “In a bid to reduce the cost of remitting  funds to Nigeria, the Central Bank of Nigeria on March 8, 2021  introduced a refund of N5 for every  $1  of fund remitted into the country through IMTOs licensed by the CBN.

“We believe this measure would help to support improved foreign exchange inflows and enable Nigerians in the Diaspora to use more formal channels relative to informal channels.

These measures are not new as several countries have adopted similar measures to   reduce the cost of remitting fund by their Diaspora community, which has led to surges in remittance inflows through formal channels.”

Vanguard News Nigeria 

The post CBN increases approved IMTOs to 57 appeared first on Vanguard News.

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