Nigeria’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), the eNaira, has reportedly recorded over 700,000 transactions totaling N8 billion one year after its launch, according to the governor of the nation’s central bank, Godwin Emefiele.
Emefiele revealed this at a conference in Lagos to commemorate the launch of the eNaira one year ago, outlining how the digital currency is a component of the apex bank’s strategy to completely transform Nigeria into a cashless society.
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The digital currency was launched in October of last year, amid the frightening growth of cryptocurrency. The Central Bank of Nigeria prohibited regulated financial institutions from conducting crypto transactions, so the eNaira was created as an alternative.
The central bank will work with other government agencies, such as the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, to promote the digital currency and its cashless policy using targeted welfare programs, according to the governor, who spoke outside the financial sector.
“Since its launch, the eNaira has offered Nigerians endless possibilities in using financial services thus, living up to the chosen slogan, ‘Same Naira, More Possibilities,’ as well as achieving some set out objectives.
“Specifically, there has been overwhelming interest and encouraging response from Nigerians and other parties across the world with 33 banks fully integrated and live on the platform; N3 billion has been successfully minted by the bank, N2.10 billion has been issued to financial institutions and about one million (919,000) customers have been on-boarded.
“Over 3,305 merchants have successfully registered on the eNaira platform across the country including Shoprite, Sahad Stores, A.A. Rano fuelling stations, Fraser Suites, November Cubes, among others; over 700,000 transactions amounting to about N8 billion have been recorded on the platform and over 2.5 million daily visits to the eNaira website,” he said.
Besides its push to steer Nigerians away from cryptocurrency through the eNaira, which it has long-advocated against, the CBN’s next goal is to close about 40% gap that exists in Nigeria’s financial inclusion goal.
Emefiele said the journey has been to make Nigeria a predominantly cashless economy where transactions are done with limited, little, or no cash.