Recognizing the significant role of remittance inflow from the diaspora as a crucial support to the Nigerian economy and its continuous contributions to the country's development, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has taken a proactive step to ease the process.
The Apex bank has directed International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) to initiate remittance pay-out in Naira to beneficiaries, in addition to foreign exchange, according to a new circular released by the CBN, dated July 10, 2023.
Previously, beneficiaries were only able to receive their remittances in U.S. Dollars through IMTOs and designated banks. But, the implementation of the CBN directive expands the options for receiving diaspora remittances to include Naira payment, alongside U.S. Dollars and the digital currency e-Naira.
The implementation of the CBN directive is immediate, offering beneficiaries greater flexibility in choosing their preferred currency option for remittances, and empowering them with increased control over their funds. It is also poised to further boost the impact of remittances on Nigeria's economy.
Nigeria is one of the countries globally with the highest remittance inflow, with a staggering $20 billion dollars remitted in 2022, according to data from Statista, ranking the country on the global top 10 list, and second in Africa, just behind Egypt, as shown in the Techloy chart.