The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Monday, released a list of 47 International Money Transfer Operators (IMYOs) approved to receive foreign exchange remittances from Diaspora Nigerians.
According to the list posted on the apex bank on it website, 17 of the IMTOs were based in the United kingdom, 14 in Lagos; eight in the United States of America; three in Abuja; two in Senegal and one each in Ibadan, Morocco and Belgium.
The CBN recently banned unauthorized international money transfer operators from such transactions, warning that it would apply severe sanctions against them, if they remained adamant.
It also came up with a new policy to force IMTOs and Money Deposit Banks to pay recipients of remittances in foreign currencies, rather than the Naira.
Until then, the IMTOs and banks were said to be shortchanging remittances beneficiaries, as they gave them less Naira equivalent of their foreign exchange sent to them by Nigerians in the Diaspora.
The practice was seen to have become a disincentive to Diaspora remittances, which led to the policy measures of the apex bank.
CBN equally went a step further to grant a N5 /$1 incentive for remittances receivers, in order to further boost Diaspora remittances.
The governor of the CBN, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said last weekend that the policy had been effectively applied by other jurisdictions to increase Diaspora remittances and expressed that Nigeria would also witness a boost in remittances, going forward.
His words, “In a bid to reduce the cost of remitting funds to Nigeria, the Central Bank of Nigeria on March 8, 2021 introduced a refund of N5 for every $1 of fund remitted into the country through IMTOs licensed by the CBN.
“We believe this measure would help to support improved foreign exchange inflows and enable Nigerians in the Diaspora to use more formal channels relative to informal channels.
“These measures are not new as several countries have adopted similar measures to reduce the cost of remitting fund by their Diaspora community, which has led to surges in remittance inflows through formal channels.”