New Payment Processor Coming To Nigeria

Executives at the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) recently announced that Verve and Visa will now participate in the rollout of smartcards in Nigeria. Previously, only MasterCard operated in the African country, and had been contracted by the NIMC to roll out 13 million smartcards with electronic payments capability for Nigerian citizens and legal residents before the end of 2014.

NIMC Director General Chris Onyemenam explained at the Card Expo & Exhibition 2014 that the plan is to create smartcards on three platforms: MasterCard, Visa and Verve. BusinessDay reported that Onyemenam said that Verve is still being tested while MasterCard and Visa have been approved.

“The scheme can help the law enforcement agencies in the country to do their jobs much more effectively through the provision of requisite infrastructure for verification and confirmation of identities of people coming in and out of the country,” he said.

Onyemenam added that the move could also deepen Nigerian’s access to credit, strengthen the cashless drive, and effect reduce the huge cost of managing the nation’s currency. Also, when the scheme is fully implemented, credit would drive the Nigerian economy as against cash.

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