The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in its new Guide to Charges by Banks and Other Financial Institutions, has reduced the fee for ATM withdrawal from ₦65 to ₦35.

This means after the third withdrawal within the same month which is free, customers will now pay ₦35 instead of ₦65 for using the ATM of other banks.

This New Guide is expected to take effect from January 1, 2020, and replaces the Guide to Charges by Banks and Other Financial Institutions issued in 2017.

The CBN also disclosed in the guideline that bank customers will now pay ₦10 for electronic transfers below ₦5,000, and ₦25 for electronic transfer between ₦5,000 and ₦50,000. Only electronic transfer above ₦50,000 will attract ₦50 charge.

Other important announcements in the CBN guideline are:

1.) Removal Card Maintenance Fee (CAMF) on all cards linked to current accounts.

2.) A maximum of one Naira per mille for customer induced debit transactions to third parties and transfers or lodgments to the customers’ account in other banks on current accounts only.

3.) Cards linked to a savings account, the maintenance fee has been reduced to a maximum of N50 per quarter from N50 per month amounting to only N200 per annum instead of N600.

4.) No more charges for reactivation or closure of accounts such as savings, current and domiciliary accounts while status inquiry at the request of the customer (like confirmation letter, letter of non-indebtedness and reference letter) will now attract a fee of N500 per request.

5.)  A one-off charge of N1,000 applies to the issuance of cards, irrespective of card type (regular or premium).  N1,000 also applies to the replacement of debit cards requests by customers.

Penalties for breaching the guide

a.) For arbitrary charges, N2,000,000 per infraction or as may be determined by the CBN from time to time for financial institutions that breach any provision of the guide.

b.) Bank will now log customer complaints into the Consumer Complaints Management System (CCMS) in addition to generating a unique reference code for each complaint lodged, which must be given to the customer. Failure to log and provide the code to the customer, it added, amounts to a breach and is sanctionable with a penalty of N1,000,000 per breach.

Isaac Okorafor, CBN Director, Corporate Communications, explained that current Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc Instant Payment (NIP) charges apply to the use of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), purchase with cash-back will attract a charge of N100 per N20,000 subject to cumulative N60,000 daily withdrawal.

According to the Director, the CBN carried out the review of the Guide, which also prescribes charges permissible for Other Financial Institutions and non-bank financial institutions, in order to align with market developments.

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