The Central Bank of Nigeria has said the e-Naira will provide a secure and cheaper Diaspora remittance option.
The apex bank said this on its newly launched website for the eNaira.
According to the CBN, the e-Naira is a digital currency that provides a unique form of money denominated in naira.
The CBN said, “e-Naira provides a secure and cheaper diaspora remittance option and an increase in the speed of such transactions.”
In 2020, remittance into Nigeria fell to $17.21bn, making up four per cent of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product in the year. In 2018 and 2019, remittance was $24.31bn and $23.81bn respectively.
To increase official channels of Diaspora remittances, the Central Bank had recently rolled out a number of measures in the face of dwindling foreign exchange from other sources.
Faced with dwindling foreign reserves, the CBN offered ‘Naira-4-Dollar’ to increase the remittances into the nation in March 2021.
According to a report by The PUNCH, CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, at the time had said, “Furthermore, in an effort to reduce the cost burden of remitting funds to Nigeria by working Nigerians in the Diaspora, the Central Bank of Nigeria has introduced a rebate of N5 for every $1 of fund remitted to Nigeria, through IMTOs licensed by the Central Bank.
“This rebate will be provided to the bank accounts of beneficiaries, following receipt of remittance inflows.
“We believe this new measure will help to make the process of sending remittance through formal bank channels cheaper and more convenient for Nigerians in the Diaspora.”
The apex bank said the e-Naira was both a medium of exchange and a store of value, offering better payment prospects in retail transactions when compared to cash payments.
It said the e-Naira would foster economic growth by offering easier access to capital and financial services. It added that the e-Naira would help increase the speed of remittance transactions.
The CBN said, “e-Naira enables effective, equitable, and faster distribution of cash assistance to households and communities included in government social welfare programmes; e-Naira will accelerate financial inclusion.”
The apex bank added that the e-Naira would increase local and international trade by serving as a cheaper, safer, and faster means of transaction.
It said the digital currency would also aid revenue collection by reducing cash handling costs.
Emefiele recently said that the e-Naira’s launch date might be moved from October 1 to October 4 because of the Independence Day celebration.