- Fintech Nigeria Engages CBN, NSE on Innovation in Financial Tech
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) have commended the Fintech Association of Nigeria for its efforts in bridging the gap between the regulators, government and the active players in the Nigerian Fintech ecosystem.
In a separate meeting between the members of the Governing Council of the Fintech Nigeria, led by its President, Dr. Segun Aina Director, Banking and Payment CBN, Mr. Dipo Fatokun and the Executive Director, Market Operations and Technology NSE, Mr. Ade Bajomo; both the CBN and NSE agreed with the justification for setting up of Fintech NGR, adding that its establishment was long overdue for the development of FinTech ecosystem in Nigeria.
While emphasizing the importance of Fintech Nigeria, Aina said the association would leverage its global network to bring best practices to the FinTech initiatives of the CBN thereby assisting the bank to achieve its mandate more effectively and efficiently as the association serves as the arrowhead for the coordination of the ecosystem.
“The joint initiatives of the association (FintechNGR) and CBN is meant to drive the benefits of financial inclusion down the bottom of the pyramid,” said Bunmi Lawson, Vice President, FintechNGR and CEO of Accion Microfinance Bank.
The General Secretary, FintechNGR and Associate Partner at Banwo&Ighodalo, Isa Alade, while commending the idea behind Fintech Nigeria said: ” The association by its network of membership would serve to remove regulatory bottlenecks that stifle innovation as it bridges the gap between the innovators, government and regulators.” Speaking further, Aina said that the establishment of the association would also engender inter-agency relationship amongst regulators and the government comprising CBN, SEC, NSE, NAICOM, NDIC, amongst others.
Olufemi Awoyemi, member, FintechNGRGovCo and founder/CEO of Proshare Ltd also emphasised the need for collaborative efforts within the ecosystem as it would unleash the massive potential in the Nigerian FinTech ecosystem, adding that the “association would serve to bridge information gaps amongst various stakeholders in the FinTech ecosystem thereby enabling access to the opportunities that abound within the space.”
At the end of the meeting, the CBN promised to incorporate Fintech Association to presentations on FinTech regulation in Nigeria and make available the final draft to the association for inputs.
FintechNGR will also be involved in the drive to give digital banks, otherwise known as Challenger Banks, prominence in Nigeria through fashioning out an appropriate licensing regime working with various departments of the Central Bank.
The meeting also agreed that the CBN will formally inform the association and will be carried along with regards to the outcome of the sandbox experience initiative currently being undertaken by the Central Bank in partnership with a global foundation; an engagement for which stakeholder engagement is paramount to the CBN.
Fatokun of the CBN said that the apex bank through the banks and payment system department would be happy to be a part of the knowledge development and market feedback events organized by the FintechNGR and its partners starting with 2nd National Fintech Conference coming up from 24th to 26th January 2018.
On the other hand, the NSE Executive Director, Mr. Ade Bajomo, stated that the NSE, subject to approval of its management, sees this collaborative approach as an extension of its market data, new business development and strategic push for a more integrated securities and financial market and hence will be happy to explore opportunities the planned conference presents with a focus on sector specific sessions at the conference; and will also consider extending opportunities for the association to participate in focus group sessions on key development areas being worked on by the bourse specifically targeted at creating accessible funding modules for startups through the NSE.
At both meetings, the association was tasked to ramp up the work in and around issues bothering on Fintech to the attention of the regulators and government with a focus on actual solutions that bring the largely informal markets into the formal/mainstream financial system, expand on the financial inclusion benchmarks and ensure that regulation promotes, rather than stifle creative solutions; all of which is better achieved through a collaborative and constructive engagement platform that delivers a comparable benchmark with global standards.
The consistent engagement between the association, regulators and government would surely promote home made innovative finTechsolutions,which would impact positively on the economy and the society at large.