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Digital currency will boost cross border trade, promote faster currency exchange ~CBN

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said that the introduction of the e-naira can catalyse Nigeria’s digital economy, boost cross border trade and enable better macroeconomic policy formulation.

According to Director, Information and Technology, CBN, Rakitya Muhammed, eNaira will promote faster exchange of currencies and boost cross border trade.

Muhammed, who spoke at the Third Quarter Industry Forum of the Committee of E-business Industry Heads held in Abuja on Wednesday, noted that the introduction of the e-naira can catalyse Nigeria’s digital economy, and enable better macroeconomic policy formulation.

“If people adopt more of the usage of the e-naira, then we will be able to have more data to formulate better macroeconomic policies.

“And when countries come on board and create their own digital currencies then we will be able to have faster exchange of currencies and therefore we might be able to boost cross border trade at a much lower cost.

“Of course payment efficiency, even though we know that Nigeria has one of the best payment systems in the world, we will still be able to improve on that.

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“We believe that the e-naira will be a catalyst for digital economy because the people who are outside the formal banking sector will be integrated.”

Speaking on the e-naira design, Muhammed disclosed that the design would soon be revealed as the regulatory bank had concluded its development.

The e-naira, she noted, will be a legal tender like the fiat naira, it will not replace but complement the naira and anonymity of transactions is guaranteed.

“In terms of the e-naira design, it will be a legal tender just like cash which is one of the fundamental difference between it and the cryptocurrency.

“One, e-naira will be equal to one fiat naira, and we adopted a two-tier retail model that would be a lot less disruption into the financial system.

“Our banks, payment service providers and Fintech are all going to be onboard and we are going to key to the infrastructure they have already and incorporate the new system.

“It is not meant to replace the cash we have, but only to supplement,” the director noted.

The regulatory bank had earlier revealed that it would be launching e-naira, a digital equivalent of the naira on October 1, 2021, in line with global trends.

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