Country’s highest value in five years
Nigeria’s electronic payment system has recorded a major feat since the introduction of cashless policy by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) five years ago in the area of transactions carried out by Nigerians monthly on Point of Sales (POS) terminals.
New Telegraph gathered that for the first time in history, the value of PoS transaction hit an all-time high of N81 billion in November last year.
This is according to the latest e-payment sector report for the month of November as obtained from the Nigeria Interbank Settlements System Plc. (NIBSS).
Analysts say the figure suggested that more Nigerians continue to have increased confidence in the cashless policy, which brings flexibility and confidence to the banking public, especially when making purchases.
According to the details of the 2016 PoS transaction, transaction values stood at N46.65 billion, N46.14 billion, N51.96 billion and N53.28 billion in January, February, March and April, this year, PoS transactions were valued respectively.
In May, the monthly PoS transaction figures rose to N55.136 billion; N55.292 billion June and by the end of July, the figure was N59.397 billion. At the end of August, which is the latest data in the country, the value of PoS transaction stood at N64.106 billion.
In September, October and November, PoS values were N66.44 billion; N71.81 billion and N81.15 billion respectively.
The November transaction values were carried out on some 117,080 PoS terminals deployed across the country, though 136,324 terminals have been registered by various Payment Terminal Service providers (PSPS).
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had set a 350,000 PoS deployment target for the country, but has not been able to achieve this target, despite the increase in the number of Payment Terminal Service Providers (PTSPs) licensed.
PTSPs are the companies licensed by the apex bank to deploy PoS terminals for merchants on behalf of the banks.
The idea of PTSP was conceived to allow the banks focus on their core banking services without bothering themselves with the deployment of PoS for merchants.
Till date, no fewer than 19 terminal operators have been licensed by the apex bank to deepen cashless economy in the country.
They include Global Accelerex Limited, Citiserve Limited, Interswitch Limited, ITEX Integrated Systems, Top Limited, Paymaster Limited, Globasure Technologies Limited, Signal Sources Nigeria Limited, Bizzdesk Global Solutions Limited, Callphone Limited and Cloud Systems Limited.
Others include TITIS /Goswiff Limited, Nera Networks Nigeria Limited, Electronic Settlement Limited, Computer Warehouse Group Plc, Inlaks Computers Limited, Easyfuel Limited, Emerging Markets Telecommunication Services Limited and Ameya Infocom Limited.
Chief Executive Officer of NIBSS, Mr. Adebisi Shonubi, had said that the success so far recorded was still commendable, saying the e-payment sector is gaining traction.
“The increase in volume and value of consumer transactions carried out via PoS is indicative of growing acceptance and use of the payment channel, attributable to sustained public awareness,” he added.
Also commenting on the milestone PoS transaction value recorded in November, Chief Executive Of-ficer and Executive Secretary of the Electronic Payment Providers Association of Nigeria (E-PPAN), Mrs. Regha Onajite, said “more and more people are beginning to be more aware of the importance and efficiency of adopting an electronic payment platform such as PoS for payment when they go shopping.”
She, however, advocated increased awareness among private and public sectors to deepen electronic payment transaction adoption in the country.
Onajite added that there is need for telecoms companies to provide unhindered services to power the PoS terminals with a view to building confidence to use the terminals in Nigerians, saying: “What we have seen during our awareness creation activities across the country is that poor connectivity discourages merchant from using the terminals.
There is also the need for more incentives for the merchants. I think this is the way to go.”