Google has announced updates to its Google Play Developer Program Policy that is expected to come into force from January 31, 2023.

The new update will require apps in Nigeria and Kenya, which offer loans, lead generators, and those that connect consumers with third-party lenders to comply with state and local regulations for any region or country that the app targets.

According to these updates, digital money lenders in Nigeria must adhere to the Limited Interim Regulatory/Registration Framework and Guidelines for Digital Lending, established by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) in the country.

This framework for Digital Lending which was released in August 2022, was the Commission’s approach to regulating the digital lending space and curbing exploitative digital lending practices in Nigeria.

Upon request, digital lending platforms must also be able to provide Google Play with other information that proves their compliance with the appropriate regulatory and licensing authority in the country.

In the same vein, Kenyan money lending platforms are also required to complete the Personal Loan App Declaration for Kenya, provide the necessary documentation to support their declaration and obtain a license from the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) as part of their declaration.

With the current upsurge in the number of personal loan apps becoming more available to a previously underserved population in the region, Google's new policy is aimed at protecting users from apps that provide deceptive or harmful financial products and services, by demanding compliance with local regulations.