According to the Central Bank of Nigeria, locals will be able to use the eNaira to pay their bills, flight tickets, and TV subscriptions. This is part of a campaign to promote the financial product and encourage more people to use it in their daily transactions.
The Upgrade of Nigeria’s CBDC
It is safe to say that the most populated country in Africa – Nigeria – is among the leaders in terms of CBDC efforts. Last year, the authorities introduced the eNaira under the slogan “Same Naira, more possibilities.” The nation’s central bank raised hopes that the product will make financial transactions “easier and seamless for every strata of the society.”
Recent coverage claims that the CBN will upgrade the CBDC this week. It will be available to the public as a payment option for bills, flight tickets, TV and Internet subscriptions, or to pay for other services such as bill payments, flights, and television. To do so, the financial institution partnered with the mobile banking firm – Bizi Mobile. Providing more details was Bariboloka Koyor – Branch Controller at the CBN:
“Starting from next week, there is going to be an upgrade on the eNaira speed wallet app that will allow you to do transactions such as paying for DSTV or electric bills or even paying for flight tickets.“
According to the bank, the upgrade will make Nigerians more aware of the product. They should also use it more often to pay and strengthen its presence in the country.
“This is a project that the CBN has rolled out to reach out to every Nigerian in terms of financial inclusion and in terms of efficiency, reliability, and safety of banking transactions so that we can do banking transactions very easily and safely and the people in Nigeria can enjoy the benefit of the eNaira,” Koyor concluded.
Nigerians Are Keen to Crypto
Despite the CBN’s attempts to introduce the eNaira to the locals, it remains uncertain how successful that move would be. Nigerians are fascinated by cryptocurrency like bitcoin, which is completely different from CBDCs.
A recent study estimated that over 33 million of Nigeria’s adults have owned or traded digital assets in the past six months. 52% of them have invested more then half their wealth into the market. 70% of them pledged to increase their exposure before 2022.
Research has shown that high interest in this asset class is driven mainly by the rising inflation rates. Locals made the decision to convert their fiat currency into crypto in an attempt to preserve their wealth during financial turmoil.
Another reason that they are jumping on to the digital asset bandwagon, is the fact that a significant portion of Nigerians don’t have access basic financial services.