BY PROVIDENCE OBUH
MasterCard Worldwide has said that the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) Cash-less Nigeria initiative will set the standard for economies across Africa and globally.
According to a report made available to Vanguard by Mastercard’s, Country Manager, West Africa, Mrs Omokehinde Ojomuyide, said, “The decision to change the way that Nigerian citizens conduct their payments behaviour is a brave one, and the CBN is blazing the trail ahead of its African counterparts in its commitment to reduce the amount of cash circulating in the economy.
“Cash is expensive to print, secure and distribute, it reduces the transparency of an economy, and it can negatively impact the government’s focus, which in turn reduces government’s ability to deliver services to its citizens
“Businesses that depend on cash transactions cannot grow their customer base beyond the individuals who can visit them in person to deliver cash payments.
“Similarly, they are limited to purchasing raw materials from suppliers to whom they can physically hand their payment. When a business is geared for electronic payments, it can grow its customer base – and its resource pool – far beyond the limitations of its immediate geographic area.”
“Many business owners seek the short term gains of a cash business, but in the long term, a dependence on cash prevents the enduring growth and the exponential success that is the goal of every committed entrepreneur.”
Ojomuyide pointed out that the key partners in the success of the cash-less initiative are the financial sector, consumers and businesses.
To this end he said, “These stakeholders are the cogs around which the wheels of growth and development in Nigeria turn, and MasterCard hasput strategic initiatives in place for each stakeholder in order to support the CBN in its quest to drive the development and modernization of the Nigerian payment system.”
Continued, she said, “MasterCard has a shared objective with the CBN, in that our global vision is of a world beyond cash. We believe that with a pioneering initiative like Cash-less Nigeria in place, the country will soon reach a tipping point where innovative electronic payment systems will leapfrog the historical systems that have hindered economic growth historically.”
On the other hand, Associate Vice President, Account Management for West African Business, MasterCard Worldwide, Mr. Kamil Olufowobi said “At times it was really difficult to avoid using cash, however, where I was able to avoid using cash, I enjoyed the convenience and security that came with making purchases with a MasterCard payment card. The experience was a valuable one – and I will continue to work on reducing my use of cash in my day to day transactions.”
Olufowobi further stated, “We remain unwavering in our commitment to support the Central Bank of Nigeria in its drive to significantly reduce the use of cash in the country’s economy. We look forward to working with Nigerian banks and retailers to facilitate the reduction of cash within their payment systems by offering innovative, safe and convenient payment alternatives to their customers.”