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CBN Hikes Interest Rate Amid Rising Inflation




CBN Governor, Yemi Cardoso

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Monetary Policy Committee has implemented a 150-basis-point increase in interest rates, raising them to 26.25 percent from the previous 24.75 percent in March.

The CBN Governor, Olayemi Cardoso, announced on Tuesday that this decision was made to address the country’s growing inflation issue.

Speaking during the 295th MPC press briefing held in Abuja today, Cardoso said the primary objective of this interest rate hike is to curb the rising headline inflation, which reached 33.69 per cent in April.

Naija News reports that the apex bank has consistently employed monetary measures to combat inflation.

This particular MPC meeting marks the third one since Cardoso assumed office in September of last year. As of May 2023, Nigeria’s interest rate was recorded at 18.75 per cent.

CBN Withdraws Directive On Cybersecurity Levy Collection

Meanwhile, the CBN has officially rescinded its directive that required banks and payment service providers to collect and remit fees as specified under the Cybercrime Prevention and Prohibition Amendment Act of 2024.

Announced in a revised circular dated May 17, 2024, this move marks a significant policy reversal.

The initial mandate, outlined in a May 6 circular, aimed at bolstering national cybersecurity measures by enforcing the collection of a national cybersecurity levy from financial institutions.

Naija News reports that the revised circular, signed by the Director of Payment Systems Management, Chibuzor Efobi, and the Director of Financial Policy and Regulation at the CBN, Haruna Mustafa, effectively nullifies the previous directive.

Titled “Re: Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc.) (Amendment) Act 2024 – Implementation Guidance on the Collection and Remittance of the National Cybersecurity Levy,” it indicates a complete withdrawal of the earlier circular and a pause in enforcing the levy collection.

This retraction followed widespread backlash from various stakeholders, which sparked a national debate on the levy’s implications for businesses and the public.

The Federal Executive Council responded by suspending the law’s provisions, citing the need for additional reviews to address the concerns raised.

The circular read, “The Central Bank of Nigeria circular dated May 6, 2024 (Ref: PSMD/DIR/PUB/LAB/017/004) on the above subject refers.

“Further to this, please be advised that the above-referenced circular is hereby withdrawn.”

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