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NAICOM to Boost Financial Inclusion with NIIDP

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National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), on Monday said it has concluded plans to launch the Nigerian Insurance Industry Development Plan (NIIDP) in order to boost financial inclusion.

The commission said it had already concluded work on the NIIDP, with KPMG, a consulting firm monitoring its implementation to ensure each segment of the market kept to date with their assigned responsibilities.

The Commissioner for Insurance and Chief Executive Officer, NAICOM, Mohammed Kari, said this at the National Insurance Conference, in Abuja.

The conference had ‘Insurance Industry and Financial Inclusion’ as its theme.

He said: “The timing of this Conference could not have been more significant especially as we prepare to launch the Nigerian Insurance Industry Development Plan (NIIDP) which has Financial Inclusion as one of its major components. Work on the NIIDP has already been concluded with inputs from KPMG, consulting firms who will also independently monitor its implementation to ensure each segment of the market keep to date with their assigned responsibilities.

“It may interest you to know that the plan has been presented to the Insurers Committee, a body comprising management of NAICOM, CEOs of insurance companies and heads of insurance trade associations and the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) to ensure every player in the industry is on the same page with us. I commend the market committee and KPMG for the good job on the NIIDP.

“How the insurance sector in Nigeria could effectively and efficiently navigate this turn to increase the number of policyholders while reducing the figure of the financially excluded, is part of what the NIIDP contain.

“The strategic initiatives and implementation plans of the NIIDP notwithstanding, we have dedicated this forum to financial inclusion for an opportunity to listen to speakers and discussants with divergent views and opinions so as to improve on what we already have.”

NAICOM also linked high rate of poverty in Nigeria and the rest of the world to financial exclusion.

Kari said the insurance sector plays a vital role in any economy by helping to reduce the poverty line.

He said: “The general consensus seems to be that financial exclusion is one of the main causes of poverty in the world.

“The insurance sector plays a vital role in all of these because it helps to reduce the poverty line, it helps entities and individuals manage their risks and protects them from negative adverse effects of unforeseeable events.

“Commission recognizes financial inclusion as a tool for financial development and inclusive growth agenda and will therefore, continue to support the development of products that will improve the standard of living of the people and increase the role of insurance in the development and growth of the average Nigerian’s standard of living.

He added that Nigeria launched the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) in 2012 to reduce the percentage of adults that are excluded from financial services from 46.3 per cent in 2010 to 20 per cent by 2020.

“The strategic goals are driven by a broad range of coordinated interventions, including simplified Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations, Agent banking, Micro insurance and Consumer Protection principles,” he added.

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E-Financial

Oyo State Seals Diamond Bank, FCMB, Skye Bank Branches

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Oyo State government yesterday sealed some branches of commercials banks in Ibadan for allegedly failing to pay some levies into the coffers of the state government despite series of warnings to them.

 

The affected banks are: Diamond Bank, Stanbic IBTC Bank, Skye Bank, FCMB and Heritage Bank around Dugbe, Mokola, Idi-Ape, Agodi Gate, Secretariat Road, Challenge, Jericho, Bodija, UI among others.

 

This left business activities at the bank branches disrupted as the task force officials seal the premises.

 

As early as 9am, no fewer than 20 different branches of the various bank had been shut with sealed notices placed at the property.

 

Immediately, the officials of the affected banks were seen running around to tidy up their papers to save losing the whole day’s business.

 

While some succeeded in making the necessary payment as fast as they could to resume operations, some others were seen still trying to reach out to superior authority for further directive.

 

According to the report, the affected banks defaulted in the payment of the annual environmental development levy, which is for the impact of the various business and corporate entities on the environment across the state.

 

The affected banks were said to have been found guilt for various duration ranging from 2015 to 2018, despite series of official communications and reminders to the management at different times.

 

It would be recalled that the Oyo State Board of Internal Revenue (OYBIR), the coordinating agency for collecting all government revenues had last month issued a 14 day ultimate to all tax payers in the state to pay up all outstanding dues and levies to the coffers of government.

 

Mr Bicci Alli, chairman of the Board,  had warned in the paid advertorial that the agency would embark on massive enforcement to seal up all erring corporate organisations on the expiration of the ultimatum.

 

But a source hinted that about two weeks after the expiration of the 14 days, the OYBIR had also written series of reminder letters to the affected banks, to which no response was gotten until the enforcement.

 

Many people who were within the affected bank premises when the enforcement team sealed up were seen with shock on the faces and expressing disappointment that cooperate organizations like banks could default in tax payment.

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CBN to Fine Banks N10,000 for Failed e-Transactions

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned banks that any failed electronic transaction not reversed into the customer’s account within 24 hours will attract a fine of N10,000.

 

The apex bank made this known in its ‘Circular on the regulation on instant inter-bank electronic funds transfer services in Nigeria’, issued to Deposit Money Banks, microfinance banks, and other financial institutions.

 

In the circular CBN also said that delayed application of inward NIP into beneficiary’s accounts beyond four minutes would attract a penalty fee of N10,000 per item.

 

 

The circular, signed by Dipo Fatokun, CBN’s director of banking and payment system department, said the new regulation takes effect October 2, 2018.

 

The circular stated that where a sending entity erroneously sent value contrary to the customer’s instructions due to wrong account number, wrong amount, duplication among others to a receiving entity and requested the reversal in writing within 14 working days of the transaction, the receiving entity should oblige within one business day without recourse to the customer (beneficiary) of the receiving entity provided funds were available.

 

An automatic indemnity would be inferred against the sending entity making the reversal request, it stated.

 

Where funds were not available, it added, the receiving entity should immediately notify its customer that the account was wrongly credited and provide proof of such notification to the sending entity.

 

It added that the receiving entity should notify the customer about the consequences of not funding the account within 24 hours, which included watch-listing in the banking industry, credit bureau and reporting to law enforcement agencies.

 

In the circular, the receiving entity would watch-list the customer if he failed to provide funds within seven days, the CBN stated.

 

If a customer claims to have made a transfer in error where the beneficiary is known to the complainant, the CBN said the Sending Entity shall encourage the complainant to contact the beneficiary for an amicable settlement.

 

But where the beneficiary is not known to the complainant or a known beneficiary refused to effect a refund to the complainant, the Sending Entity having received a tenable claim from customer shall notify the Receiving Entity who shall place a lien on the amount in the account of the beneficiary and thereafter obtain the consent of the beneficiary to execute refund.

 

The circular explained that the Sending Entity shall mean a Nigerian company or Financial Institution licensed by the CBN to carry on the business of facilitating Electronic Funds Transfer services in Nigeria and who initiates an Instant EFT on behalf of its customers while the Receiving Entity shall mean a Nigerian company or Financial Institution licensed by the CBN to carry on the business of facilitating Electronic Funds Transfer services in Nigeria and who receives the proceeds of Instant EFT on behalf of its customer.

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Access Bank Partners Worldremit On Money Transfer

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WorldRemit, international digital money transfer service has partnered with Access Bank for instant money transfers to Access Bank accounts in Nigeria.

 

The new partnership further expands WorldRemit’s presence in Nigeria, allowing its customers in over 50 countries to send money to millions of Access Bank accounts directly from their phones.

 

Access Bank is a leading commercial bank in Nigeria, with an extensive network of millions of customer accounts and over 340 branches.

 

The new partnership with WorldRemit would increase convenience and ease of banking for Access Bank’s customers in Nigeria as well as support the country’s efforts to achieve financial inclusion.

 

Plans to grow the partnership would connect over 15 million Access Bank customers in Nigeria, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Rwanda, the Gambia, Sierra Leone and Zambia to WorldRemit’s best in class online money transfer experience.

 

The deal supports WorldRemit’s plan to serve 10 million customers connected to emerging markets by 2020. With a diaspora of 15 million people living in countries including the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada, remittances play a significant role in Nigeria’s economy.

 

The World Bank estimates that in 2017 alone Nigeria received $22 billion in remittances, making it the largest recipient in Africa.

 

Andrew Stewart, regional director of Africa and the Middle East at WorldRemit, commented, “We are delighted to be partnering with Access Bank, a leading commercial bank in Nigeria with a strong presence across Africa.

 

“Nigeria remains our largest market in Africa, accounting for one quarter of all transactions to the continent, and this partnership will support the country’s transition from offline remittances to online, safer, faster and lower-cost money transfer methods.”

 

Victor Etuokwu, executive director at Access Bank Plc, said, “It is with great pleasure that Access Bank Plc is partnering with WorldRemit, a reputable global payment service, to provide our customers with secure and reliable international money transfers.

 

“As a top player in the remittance industry in Nigeria, our extensive branch network and large customer base will be invaluable to this partnership, and we are confident that this relationship will be mutually beneficial to both parties. This alliance also supports Access Bank’s aspiration of being Africa’s gateway to the world.”

 

Last year WorldRemit became Arsenal FC’s first-ever online money transfer partner in a global sponsorship deal.

 

WorldRemit customers complete one million transfers every month from over 50 countries to over 145 destinations. More than half of its transfers go to Africa.

 

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