Banks to charge current accounts holders N1 on every N1000 transaction
In a bid to generate revenue for deposit money banks, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced a maintenance fee on current account transactions. This was revealed in a circular signed by Kevin Amugo, director, financial policy and regulation department of the CBN, dated January 20 and addressed to the commercial banks. This comes few weeks after the central bank kicked off its Zero COT (commission on turnover) policy for all commercial banks within the country. “The revised guide to bank charges (RGBC) which came into effect on April 1, 2013 provides for a phased elimination of commission on turnover (COT) charges in the Nigerian banking industry, under the guidelines, a zero COT regime was to come into effect from January 2016,” CBN said in the circular. The CBN said it noted that while COT was gradually phased out, some banks began charging maintenance fee in addition to COT. The bank said it was also aware of the impact of dwindling oil prices, Treasury Single Account (TSA) and other market turbulence. Hence, the CBN said “in the interest of stability, of the banking system, a negotiable current account maintenance fee not exceeding N1.00 per mille (1/N1,000) may be charged in respect to all customer induced debit transaction”. This means for every N100,000 leaving a current account in Nigeria, deposit money banks are permitted to take N100 for account maintenance. This policy is coming less than two weeks after the CBN introduced stamp duties of N50 per transaction.