February 26, 2024

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CBN to Launch Nigeria’s Domestic Card Today

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CEM REPORT, FINANCE | The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in collaboration with the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement Systems (NIBSS) Plc and other financial ecosystem stakeholders is set to launch the much anticipated National Domestic Card Scheme.

The card which was announced in 2022 will be launched today Thursday 26th January at a virtual event that will be graced by critical stakeholders in the financial ecosystem.

An earlier statement by the CBN and NIBSS announcing the scheme stated that the new Domestic Card Scheme will transform the domestic and African payment landscape through the promotion of innovation in payment, enhancement of interoperability domestically and internationally and improvement in the suite of products and solutions offerings by banks and other financial institutions such as debit, credit, virtual, loyalty and tokenized cards.

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CBN added that the scheme is designed to address the specific requirements of Nigeria’s payment industry and provide innovative offerings tailored to the Nigerian market and beyond.

The National Domestic Card set to be delivered to over 200 million Nigerians offers unique value propositions through enhanced data sovereignty and transaction security, better pricing opportunities, reduced demand for FX, enhanced financial access and support of the growth of a robust and inclusive digital economy, amongst others.

By launching the scheme, the CBN said Nigeria would join countries like India, Turkey, China, and Brazil who have used this means to service the underbanked areas in their jurisdiction.

Although is still unclear how the new card will rival Visa and Mastercard which have dominated the card payment market in Nigeria.

CEM had earlier reported that while they remain convenient, especially for international transactions, domestic cards are expected to better serve the unbanked market and increase competition within the payment landscape.

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They should also have the capacity to reduce Nigeria’s reliance on foreign-owned financial services companies.

Expected to grace the historical virtual event are critical stakeholders in the financial ecosystem such as the Governor of the CBN, Deputy Governors of the CBN, the Director General Securities and Exchange Commission and the Managing Director of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Also expected at the event are representatives of multilateral agencies, Switches and Processors, Payment Service Banks, Mobile Money Operators, Payment Terminal Service Providers, Payment Solutions Service Providers, card manufacturers and industry associations.

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