Economy News

New Naira: CBN Launches Cash Swap Programme For Rural Areas

New Naira: CBN Launches Cash Swap Programme For Rural Areas
  • PublishedJanuary 21, 2023

With about 10 days to the expiry of the old naira notes, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) unveiled a cash swap programme in partnership with Super Agents & Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to enable those in rural areas or with limited access to formal financial services to exchange old naira notes for redesigned notes.

The initiative takes effect from Monday, January 23, 2022.

This was disclosed by Mr Haruna Mustafa CBN’s Director of Banking Supervision in a circular to DMBs, Mobile Money Operators and Super Agents.

He said the move will work side by side with sustained nationwide awareness/sensitisation programmes, enforced speedy collection of the new notes at CBN branches by the Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) and mandated issuance of the new notes through Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to ensure distribution is fair, transparent and evenly spread across the country.

Under the cash swap arrangement, the old N1,000, N500, and N200 notes can be exchanged for the newly redesigned notes and/or the existing lower denominations (N100, N50 and N20, etc) which remain legal tender.

“The agent shall exchange a maximum of N10,000 per person. Amounts above N10,000 may be treated as cash-in deposits into wallets or bank accounts in line with the cashless policy. BVN, NIN, or Voter’s card details of the customers should be captured as much as possible.

“To promote financial inclusion, this service is also available to anybody without a bank account. Agents may, on request, instantly open a wallet or account, leveraging the CBN Tiered KYC Framework. This will ensure that this category of the populace is able to exchange or deposit their cash seamlessly without taking unnecessary risks or incurring undue costs.

“Agents shall sensitise customers on opening wallets/ bank accounts and the various channels for conducting electronic transactions.

“Designated agents are eligible to collect the redesigned notes from DMBs in line with the Revised Cash Withdrawal Limit policy. Agents are also permitted to charge cashout fees for the cash swap transactions but prohibited from charging any further commissions to customers for this service”, the circular noted.

Agents are required to render weekly returns to their designated banks regarding cash swap transactions.

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