The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) is set to join other industry stakeholders to examine the opportunities, identify concrete solutions, and interventions that would ensure the achievement of the nation’s financial inclusion objectives at the International Financial Inclusion Conference on the 24th and 25th of November 2022 in Abuja, Nigeria. Themed “Financial Inclusion for all: Scaling Innovative Digital Models”, the conference is the first to be held since the country launched its National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) in 2012.
NIBSS, in collaboration with other Financial Services Providers has made huge investments to provide affordable Digital Financial Services (DFS) to the unbanked and financially excluded members of the Nigerian population. In line with the National Financial Inclusion initiative, the timely delivery of financial services through Agency banking has also revolutionized the economy, as this has boosted job creation through Financial Entrepreneurship, Skills Acquisition, Digitalization of the Society and Increased GDP, as each state’s economic activity is increased with a multiplier effect”.
Speaking on stakeholders’ contribution towards the National financial Inclusion objectives, the Managing Director/CEO of NIBSS, Mr. Premier Oiwoh, reiterated the role of technology in the provision of financial and payment innovation. “ we are aware that Digital financial inclusion enables access to financial services and advance the economic progress in underserved market segments, In ensuring that the financially excluded are efficiently and effectively catered for within the ecosystem, we have created a platform-based payment system to enable the players in the ecosystem innovate and thrive.” The industry over the years has leveraged cutting-edge technology to design and deliver financial products and services to drive financial inclusion, he added.
As the National Financial Inclusion Steering Committee and the industry prepares for the upcoming two-day International Financial Inclusion Conference (IFIC2022), scheduled to hold in Abuja, research has shown that Financial Inclusion stimulates the growth of the local economy while empowering the citizens. It provides access to basic financial services for the unbanked to be served in a manner that is sustainable and affordable, as it is aimed at enhancing growth and development.
Among other innovative payment solutions created for financial inclusion, the introduction of the NIBSS Instant Payment (NIP) platform transformed the way Nigerians choose to pay for goods and services at all levels. Leveraging on this, NIP has provided more opportunities for Financial Services Providers and other players within the ecosystem to innovate and provide more options to drive financial inclusion.
Also, through the initiative of the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Bank Verification Number (BVN) was developed to harmonize the financial services sector, improve banking operations and encourage financial inclusion. With strong collaboration across the ecosystem, NIBSS has over the years facilitated the growth and proliferation of BVN with the commencement of remote offline BVN Enrolment by Agents for a wider reach. This is in addition to the recently launched ‘iGree’ BVN Consent Management Platform, for expanded financial inclusion and consumer protection.
In addition to the successful deployment of Biometric Scanners at no cost to financial services providers, inclusive of DMBs, Super Agents, MMOs for the purpose of remote BVN enrolment, NIBSS has implemented 100% increase in monetary incentives paid to BVN enrolling Agents to incentivize them for every new BVN successfully enrolled in a bid to drive sustainable Financial Inclusion.
Through the use of cutting-edge technology innovation to drive micro-payments and a cashless economy across the Nation, below are other areas through which NIBSS has supported the Nation’s Financial Inclusion strategy:
- Introduction of the NXPay Platform, an affordable industry Local Money Transfer financial inclusion initiative, with token value redemption at agent locations.
- Development of New Quick Response (NQR) for affordable, contactless, digital payments.
- Launch of the NIBSS Easy Pay for instant transfers for non-bank Financial Service Providers (FSPs).
- Development of an Industry Centralized Dispute Service (IDRS) for dispute resolution across the industry.