CBN Slashes Cash Withdrawal Limit

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 CEM REPORT, FINANCE | To further curtail inflation and excess cash in circulation the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced a new policy that limits over-the-counter cash withdrawals by individuals and corporate entities to N100,000 and N500,000, respectively, per week.

The policy also provides that all cash withdrawals above the stated limits will attract processing fees of 5% and 10%, respectively.

The new policy contained in a circular issued today by the apex bank will take effect nationwide on January 9, 2023.

According to the new policy weekly withdrawals through automated teller machines (ATMs) will be reduced to N100,000 per individual. Withdrawals through this channel will also be subject to an N20,000 daily withdrawal limit.

In the same vein, the daily withdrawal limit through a point of sale (POS) terminals is N20,000.

The released circular also notes that the new N500 and N1000 banknotes will not be withdrawn through ATMs, as only N200 and below will be made available through the channel.

The new policy is coming barely weeks after President Muhammadu Buhari launched the newly redesigned N200, N500, and N1000 banknotes.

Furthermore, in line with the new cash withdrawal limits, any third-party cheques above N50,000 will not be processed over the counter by any bank. The CBN said the “extant limits of N10, 000, 000 on clearing cheques still subsist”.

The policy allows for the provision for individuals and corporates to withdraw N5 million and N10 million, respectively, once a month.

This however is subject to the provisions of compelling evidence of legitimate business purposes.

“In compelling circumstances, not exceeding once a month, where cash withdrawal above the prescribed limits is required for legitimate purposes, such cash withdrawals shall not exceed N5,000,000 and N10,000,000 for individuals and corporate organisations, respectively, and shall be subject to the referenced processing fees in (1) above, in addition to the enhanced due diligence and further information requirements.”

To qualify for this exception, individuals and corporate organisations must provide the following information:

  • Valid means of identification.
  • Bank verification number (BVN)
  • Notarised declaration by the customer stating the reason for the excess cash withdrawal.
  • Written approval by the Managing Directors for drawees withdrawing on behalf of companies.
  • The CEOs of banks must authorise such withdrawals in writing.

The newly introduced policy is part of the apex bank’s plans to protect the newly redesigned banknotes and guard against their misuse, counterfeiting, and hoarding.

The CBN mentioned that the policy on revised cash withdrawal limits is in line with its cashless policy.

Consequently, the CBN intends to encourage more Nigerians to embrace alternative channels to carry out their banking transactions, especially the eNaira.

The CBN through this policy will hope you curb inflation resulting in excess cash in circulation.

Recall a CEM report where the CBN governor had mentioned that currency in circulation doubled from an estimated 1.46 trillion in December 2015, to 2.26 trillion in December 2022.

Also, recall that the apex bank hinted that it plans to reduce the volume of N500 and N1000 in circulation.

 

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