Ten Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) and super agents will, any moment from now, start deploying financial services agents’ outlets across the country as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) collaborates with banks and other stakeholders to deepen Financial Inclusion in Nigeria. This was announced Tuesday in Lagos at a briefing organised by the body of bank CEOs to unveil the Shared Agent Network Plan in deepening financial inclusion in the country.
According to the Chairman of the Body of Bank CEOs, Mr. Herbert Wigwe, who is also the Managing Director/CEO of Access Bank Plc, the initiative involves an aggressive rollout of 500,000 agent network within two years to offer basic financial services, such as cash-in, cash-out, funds transfer, bill payments, airtime purchase, government disbursements as well as remote enrollment on BMS Infrastructure (BVN) to an estimated 50 million Nigerians that are currently under-banked or unbanked.
“This agreement reflects our commitment to aggressively pursue the CBN 2020 Financial Inclusion target in an integrated way with minimal systemic risk to the financial system. This initiative will also generate over 500,000 new jobs over the next two years”, he added.
A statement from the body explains that top attention would be focused on the Northern geo-political zones where financial exclusion is most predominant. “The approved CBN–Bankers Committees’ roll-out ratio is as follows: North-East 30 per cent; North-West 30 per cent North-Central 20 per cent ; South-South 7.5 per cent; South-East 7.5 per cent and South-West 5 per cent”.
Some of the pre-qualified CBN-licensed operators include Capricorn Digital Limited, Cellulant Nigeria Limited, eTranzact Limited, Innovectives Limited, Inlaks Limited, Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services Limited, Paga Tech Limited and Unified Payments Nigeria Plc.