Nigeria tightens restrictions to enforce use of E-naira

Since the launch of the E-naira in October 2021 by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the CBDC has struggled to integrate into the economy. The authorities are doing everything to force its use in the country. As of January 9, 2023, Nigerians will no longer be allowed to withdraw more than $45 per day from ATMs.

Nigeria bans ATM withdrawals over $225 to force use of E-naira

Reducing the amount of cash in circulation is becoming an important struggle for the Nigerian central bank. At least, this is according to the CBN‘s circular issued this Tuesday, December 6.

Indeed, the said note states that withdrawal of funds for businesses and individuals is limited to ₦20,000, or $45 per day. And ₦100,000 (or $225) per week at ATMs.

As for bank withdrawals, individuals will be able to withdraw per week, a limit of $225 and $1,125 for businesses.

If the amount exceeds the limit, an individual will be charged an extra 5% of the money withdrawn. The bill will increase to 10% for businesses.

These guidelines will take effect from January 9, 2023.

Prior to this restructuring, the limit on the amount of cash withdrawable via an ATM was $338 for individuals and $1128 for businesses.

Haruna Mustafa, director of banking supervision, introduced the decision to encourage Nigerian residents to use the E-naira and other government digital solutions.

Customers should be encouraged to use alternative channels (internet banking, mobile banking applications, USSD, cards/POS, eNaira, etc.) to conduct their banking transactions.

An extract from the press release

It should be noted that the adoption rate of the eNaira has not yet been convincing since its launch in October 2021. In August 2022, Bloomberg reported that only about 1% of the Nigerian population was using it.

It is for this reason that the CBN is starting to implement repressive measures to force the population, banks and businesses to use its CBDC.

This decision by the government is not insignificant. Nigeria is indeed the country with the largest adoption of cryptocurrencies in 2021. We are talking about + 1,200% over the year! Bitcoin is therefore seriously overshadowing the government’s policy by perfectly fulfilling its role as a safe and libertarian value.