In demonstration of its support for the cash-less policy, the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has provided a grant of $510,000 for the establishment of a Disaster Recovery Centre (DRC) to fortify and protect e-payment transactions in the country.
Head, Shared Services, USTDA, Chidi Umeano, who made this known in Lagos said the grant would be used to finance a qualified US firm to provide expert consulting services in determining the technical requirements, business and operational models for the project.
Already, a vendor has been evaluated and selected by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which has also received a ‘letter of no objection’ from USTDA. Besides, he said the legal unit of the CBN was already drafting contract agreement that would be reviewed and binding on both parties.
Besides, he said the banking watchdog was also developing modalities or work-plan for implementation of shared tier-three DRC infrastructure and services.
The apex bank is also working on shared power infrastructure service to the banks, as well as developing the Nigeria Financial Services Network (NFSN) to effectively achieve these objectives.
“The CBN is also setting up IT Standards Board and requisite governance framework to oversee the administration of IT standards in the industry and drive its adoption across the players in the industry. We understand that payment is the key driver of cost distribution in the industry and accounts for almost 60 per cent of the industry cost base,” he said.
Consequently, Umeano, explained that the CBN was working with the banks to ensure more efficiency in the payment system since cash management constitutes almost 80 per cent of bank infrastructure and staff, which directly drive up, the cost of banking.