CBN reviews guidelines on Int’l money transfer

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has barred Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) from operating as international money transfer service providers, while issuing guidelines for the operations of inbound and outbound international money transfer services in the Nigeria.

This is contained in a circular reference TED/FEM/FPC/GEN/01/016, signed by I. O. Gbadamosi, Director, Trade and Exchange at the CBN.

The 18-page document contains licensing requirements and standard practices regarding international money transfer services operators of both inbound and outbound transfers.

As part of the new guidelines, the CBN has pegged the maximum limit of outbound international money transfer at $2,000 per transaction, noting that the maximum allowable cash withdrawals for inbound money transfer shall not be more than $500, and that any amount in excess of $500 would be paid through an account.

It stated also that all inbound money transfer to Nigeria would be disbursed to beneficiaries who operate a bank account, mobile money wallets with the agent or through ATM.

International money transfer operators willing to operate in Nigeria shall make applications with a non-refundable fee of N500,000 and have a minimum of $1 million in their home country. For the indigenous operators, they shall have a minimum paid up capital requirement of N2 billion.

The CBN affirmed that indigenous money transfer operators willing to partner with foreign firms and make global money transfer services are expected to have a minimum net worth of $10 million as contained in their current audited accounts or as maybe determined by the CBN from time to time.

“DMBs are prohibited from operating as international money transfer service operators but can act as agents except with express approval of the CBN.

“The provision of Bank and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA) on the prohibition of employment of certain persons in banks shall also apply to international money transfer services operators.

“In line with BOFIA, all the conditions stipulating the exclusion of certain individuals from the management of banks shall apply to the management of international money transfer services providers,” CBN stated.

The CBN also prohibits DMBs from operating as international money transfer service operators but can act as agents except with the express approval of the CBN.

Part of the circular reads thus: “All international MTSOs in Nigeria shall comply with the provisions of CBN’s ‘Anti-money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism in Banks and Other Financial Institutions Regulations, 2013’ and all other applicable laws and regulations.”

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