CBN Introduces cash swap policy for new notes.
Customers will get N10,000 as cash.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed deposit money banks, super agents, and mobile money operators to swap the old N200, N500, and N1,000 for the newly redesigned notes.
Hence, they are expected to swap up to N10,000 per person, while amounts above N10,000 are to be treated as deposits.
This, it was learned, was to speed up the permeation of the new Naira notes, particularly in the rural areas of the country.
In a circular issued and signed by the director, Banking Supervision Department, CBN, Haruna B. Mustafa, and the director,
Payment System Management Department, CBN, Musa Jimoh, titled “Naira Redesign Policy: CBN Launches Cash Swap Programme in Rural and Underserved Areas,” released on Friday night, the apex bank said the swap, which would be effective on Monday, January 23, 2022, is expected to enhance the availability of the new notes and ensure people don’t lose their money as a result of the policy,
The circular requires super agents, banks, and MMOs in rural areas to swap up to N10,000 per person, with amounts above N10,000 treated as deposits.
The circular reads: “In furtherance of its Naira Redesign policy, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has sustained its nationwide awareness and sensitization programs, 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.
“In addition to these measures and in recognition of the need to maximize the channels through which underserved and rural communities can exchange their Naira, the Bank is launching a cash swap program in partnership with Super Agents and DMBs.
“The program enables citizens in rural areas or those with limited access to formal financial services to exchange old Naira notes for redesigned notes.”
The circular added that the old N1000, N500, and N200 notes can be exchanged for the newly redesigned notes and/or the existing lower denominations (N100, N50, and N20, and so on), which remain legal tender.
It stressed that “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, it pointed out that this service is also available to anybody without a bank account, adding that agents may, on request, instantly open a wallet or account, leveraging the CBN Tiered KYC Framework, saying that this will ensure that this category of the populace is able to exchange or deposit their cash seamlessly without taking unnecessary risk or incurring undue cost.
According to CBN, “designated agents are eligible to collect the redesigned notes from MBs in line with the revised cash withdrawal limit policy.” Agents are also permitted to charge cash-out fees for the cash swap transactions but are prohibited from charging any further commissions to customers for this service.
“Agents shall render weekly returns to their designated banks regarding the cash swap transactions.”
MBs must submit this information to the CBN on a weekly basis. Principals (Super Agents, MMOs, and DMBs) shall be held accountable for their agents’ adherence to the above guidelines.
All local governments, particularly those in rural areas, will be able to identify Cash Swap agents. The CBN will continue to monitor the implementation of the program and provide further guidance as may be necessary.