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Consumers Without Smartphones Can Now Make Transactions With eNaira -CBN

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is to enable consumers without smartphones to make transactions with the country’s eNaira central bank digital currency (CBDC).

According to the report, consumers without smartphones can use devices such as feature phones using unstructured supplementary service data (USSD) codes that work similarly to SMS messages.

During an IMF African Department Speakers Series conference, the central bank’s deputy governor, Kingsley Obiora said CBN is adding support for USSD codes to the eNaira to enhance financial inclusion by ensuring that those that do not have smartphones can still transact via a text-based solution that does not require them to have the eNaira digital wallet app.

Obiora said that, although almost 70% of Nigeria’s population ARE now within the financial system “that leaves us without about 30% of our population out of the financial system. We believe that the CBDC can help reduce that number even more”.

According to a report, Obiora also told the conference that, “in addition to rapid financial inclusion, the CBDC offered significant benefits which include reducing the cost of processing cash, enabling direct welfare payments, reducing the informal economy, improving tax collection, boosting cross-border trade and remittances, reducing the cost and improving the efficiency of payments, and encouraging economic growth,”

The eNaira was officially launched by Nigeria in October 2021 and announced that nearly 500, 000 consumers had downloaded the eNaira digit wallet in November 2021.

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