These two brings banking operations to your finger tips through your
smart phones, desk top and lap top computers..
C commercial banks and merchant banks are major stake holders in
Nigerian financial administration with the central bank of Nigeria as
the apex. With the recent capitalization and the support of the
Nigeria Deposit Insurance cooperation the banks are now strong and
equipped to provide first class banking services. The registration of
more commercial and merchant banks and the 100 billion minimum capital
of each bank as directed by CBN .
The banks are compelled to open more
fronts and to invest the capital. The consumers are at advantage with
a wide range of choice. Based on their sophistication in terms of
modern facilities the consumers unofficially categorized the banks
into two a] New generation banks and b] Old generation banks. This
modern banking facilities and products are more common and readily
available in the so called new generation banks.
ELECTRONIC BANKING Virtually all the commercial bank accounts are
online. This facility makes it possible to operate account in any
branch of the bank nationwide and customer does not have to carry cash
when traveling as long as they can locate a branch of the bank
wherever they are going. The introduction of Automatic Teller Machine,
and the debit /credit cards the need to carry cash is reduced. The
debit credit cards are used to collect money from the ATM and to pay
some bills like PHNN bill Water cooperation bills DSTV and many other
utility bills. The debit cards are a valuable instrument of financial
transaction even for paying bills to foreign beneficiaries like school
fees examination fees magazine subscription and many other things.
All the commercial banks provide one or more brand of credit/debit
card facility. The most common ones among the cards are VISA MASTER
CARD INTERSWITCH The cards are used also to buy articles in
supermarkets and retail shops where the logo of the provider is
displayed. The debit/credit cards also reduce the need for physical
cash when shopping for domestic items in these stores and supermarkets.
Mobile money was introduces to support the Lagos state advocated
cashless or low cash economy. The CBN appointed and licensed some
operators to operate this business for small financial transactions.
The use of mobile phones and smart phones is very important to
accomplish this facility. The licensed operators in turn register
outlets where money can be deposited into or withdrawn from the
wallet. The ewallet when properly accomplished should be able to cater
for small transactions as low as paying bus fares and petty retail
shopping. The Nigerian communication service providers are eager to
have a taste of this ewallet .Not as an intermediary but as major
agent in the collection and disbursement of money under the mobile
wallet program. But by virtue of their incorporation and legal
functions they are limited to providing communication service alone.
The MTN and GLO mobile money would have taken off earnestly but for
the clause stated above. These communication service providers are at
a vantage point for they can easily double their recharge outlets with
additional responsibility of serving as deposit and withdrawal points
for the mobile wallet. They are now applying to the CBN to grant them
the license as major actors in the mobile wallet scheme. When fully
operational the mobile wallet can take care of transactions not
exceeding 5 million Naira. Wonderful to perform this volume of
transaction on a mobile phone right in our room , office or even
inside the car. However the smart phone must be enabled by installing
some applications or software as directed by the mobile wallet
provider. In some cases complete SIM swap may be carried out to enable
the smart phone carry out additional function of mobile wallet. For
some of the security codes and applications are readily installed in
some SIM specially made for mobile payments.
WHAT ARE THE LIMITATIONS?
The mobile wallet has the following problems to contend with
1. signal on several occasions I have witnessed banking hall grounded
to a halt for lack of signal and many customers stranded. I also
experienced signal failure during a transaction and the ATM debited my
account but did not dispense money.
2. Education The facility is available and accessible to only those who
can read and write.
All these are media of exchange. Each with its own peculiarities and
ease of serving the purpose for which it is meant. The earlier four
tends to reduce the relevance of cash in the economy. Though it is
not possible to remove cash from the economy as Lagos State is
advocating a cashless economy .The quantity of cash will be
drastically reduced when the mobile wallet is fully implemented. The
mobile wallet serves the same purpose with eBanking and credit debit
card with more ease and covers a wider range of market even up to bus
fares, ATM as we are using it now is to withdraw cash into the system
and pay some utility bills.
My conclusion and speculation is that the ewallet will erode the use
of cash ATM ,credit and debit card to a drastic level when fully
implemented. Particularly if the volume of transaction allowed on it
is up to 5 million Naira