The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) developed the cashless policy in 2012, which required a daily total limit of N500,000 and N3,000,000 on free cash withdrawals across all accounts owned by individual and corporate customers respectively.
The policy mandated that individuals and corporate organizations that made cash withdrawals above the limits would be charged a service fee for amounts above the specified cumulative limits.
Furthermore, 3rd party cheques above N150,000 were stated as not be eligible for payment over the counter with effect from March 30, 2012.
As such, value for such cheques were only to be received through the clearing house.
In addition, banks were to discontinue cash in transit deposit services rendered to merchant-customers with effect from January 1, 2012.
This policy was only implemented in certain states across the country, based on a pilot study in Lagos from January 2012
While the policy took effect in Rivers, Anambra, Abia, Kano, Ogun states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on the 1st July, 2013
Most recently however, the CBN issued a circular dated September 17, 2019 “Re Implementation of the Cashless Policy” (the “Circular”) to Deposit Money Banks which stated that charges would be applied on deposits made in Lagos, Ogun, Kano, Abia, Anambra, Rivers states and the FCT effective from September 18, 2019.
At a glance, the charges are:
Notwithstanding the recent uproar, the Circular is a welcome development in the Nigerian financial sector, and the eventual extension of the policy on withdrawal and deposits to all states within the country will be a step in the right direction in line with international best practice.