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Nigeria begins mapping of bank branches

Nigeria: The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has commenced the mapping of all financial access points across the country as part of efforts to drive its newly unveiled financial inclusion strategy.

Research company Brand Fusions Limited, has been contracted to conduct the GIS mapping and is being funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The contract is specifically to map the location of financial services in relation to population density.

To this end, Agnes Tokunbo Martins, CBN’s director of banking supervision, in a circular has directed all managing directors and chief executive officers of deposit money banks to furnish the apex bank with the addresses and locations of their institutions’ head offices, branches and cash centres.

The circular also required them to provide as regards the off-site automated teller machine (ATM) points as well as their mobile agents.

Confirming the commencement of the project Martins said that it is part of the apex bank’s financial inclusion strategy and that the purpose is to find out the locations of bank branches and other outlets that provide some sort of financial services in the country.

“The ultimate objective is to find out those areas that are underserved,” Martins, who did not confirm how long the project would last, explained.

Nigeria’s apex bank last year launched a financial inclusion strategy to enable more citizens have access to a broad range of financial services including payments, savings, credit, insurance and pension products.

The strategy is aimed at reducing the percentage of adult Nigerians excluded from financial services from 46.3 percent as at 2010 to 20 percent by 2020 with a view to enabling them to have access to financial services, engage in economic activities and contribute to the development of the economy.

Source: Business Day