From Uche Usim, Abuja
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Mr Godwin Emefiele said on Monday that the eNaira was one of the major ways of strengthening the payment system infrastructure of the country, assuring that the apex bank would always invest in hi-tech projects that will boost Nigeria’s global competitiveness.
He stated this when hosting a delegation from the Bank of Uganda that was in Nigeria for an experience sharing tour of the Central Bank Digital Currency (eNaira).
According to him, it is soothing to know the eNaira, being the first of its kind for a large country like Nigeria, was attracting the interests of many countries, Uganda inclusive.
He said: “We’ve been receiving enquiries from various Central Banks in different parts of Africa and the world, trying to understand what we are doing in the area of CBDC. We are happy that the IMF and World Bank have recognised what we are doing in the area of CBDC.
“We also feel happy that we have deepened our payment system infrastructure and pride ourselves as a global player”, he said.
The CBDC was launched in October 2021 by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He noted that the embrace of the CBDC and its underlying technology, called block chain, has the potential of swelling Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by $29 billion over the next 10 years.
The President also declared that the introduction of the eNaira would enable the government to send direct payments to citizens eligible for specific welfare programmes as well as foster cross border trade.
According to him, the CBDCs can foster economic growth through better economic activities, increase remittances, improve financial inclusion and make monetary policy more effective by leveraging digital innovations.