Nigeria’s E-payment Transactions Hit N600 Trillion

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Nigeria’s electronic payment transactions in December 2023 stood at N71 trillion, bringing the total volume of transactions last year to N600 trillion.

According to the statistics from the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) Instant Payment (NIP), released recently, the N71 trillion was an all-time high monthly record on the platform. The rise could be attributed to the rising adoption of e-payments and festive activities.

The e-payment data showed a steady increase throughout 2023, amidst various challenges, including those witnessed during the critical cash crunch in the first quarter following the failed Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) naira redesign policy implemented under the then governor, Godwin Emefiele.

Indeed, the monthly analysis showed that Nigerians spent N38.9 trillion on electronic platforms in January 2023, while in February, the e-payment value stood at N36.8 trillion.

In March 2023, the value of electronic transactions jumped to N48.3 trillion, driven by the scarcity of cash at that time. By April, a total of N41.3 trillion was spent on the electronic channels, while in May, transaction volume stood at N45.9 trillion.

NIP transactions in June 2023 were N45.3 trillion, a slight decline from the value recorded in May. July saw e-payment transactions jump to N47.4 trillion. In August, the value of NIP transactions climbed further to N50.9 trillion, while it rose to N51 trillion in September.

By October and November, transaction values stood at N59 trillion and N63.6 trillion, respectively, while the highest transaction, N71.9 trillion, was recorded in December.

In a document earlier made available to The Guardian by the NIBSS, with emphasis on transactions by Nigerians during the festive period of December, the failure pattern was between 0.35 per cent to 0.95 per cent and an average processing time of 0.62.

Analysis showed that in totality, the figure rose by 55 per cent from N387 trillion witnessed in 2022 to N600 trillion by the end of 2023, which was an all-time high in the country.

NIBSS statistics showed that e-payment volume hit an all-time high of 1.1 billion in March 2023, which was at the peak of time when Nigerians experienced cash scarcity and were compelled to transact through electronic channels.

However, the value for the month was not as high as what was recorded in December of the same year.

The volume of transactions processed by NIBSS for the year also jumped from 5.1 billion in 2022 to 9.7 billion in 2023. This represents a 90 per cent increase year on year.

NIBSS Instant Payments (NIP) is an account-number-based, online real-time Inter-Bank payment solution developed in 2011 by NIBSS. It is the Nigerian financial industry’s preferred fund transfer platform that guarantees instant value to the beneficiary.

According to NIBSS, over the years, Nigerian banks have exposed NIP through their various channels, that is, Internet banking, bank branches, kiosks, mobile apps, unstructured supplementary service data (USSD), POS, ATM, among others to their customers.

Meanwhile, experts have called for improved digital platforms to deepen Nigeria’s cashless economy drive.