The Central Bank of Nigeria recently released operational guidelines for open banking in Nigeria to improve efficiency and access to financial services. According to the central bank, the guidelines’ objectives include ensuring “consistency and security across the open banking system.”
Data sharing allowed to customers
The Central Bank of Nigeria announced on March 7 that it has issued what it calls Operational Guidelines for Open Banking in Nigeria. According to the central bank, the guidelines are expected to facilitate “customer-permitted data sharing between banks and third-party companies to enable the creation of customer-focused products and services.” The guidelines are expected to enhance efficiency and access to financial services.
In a circular sent to financial institutions and payment service providers (20) (21), the CBN stated that it was “aware of the existence of an ecosystem of application programming interfaces (APIs) in financial and payment systems.” He added that he was also aware of plans to “develop acceptable standards among stakeholders.”
According to the CBN, the guidelines’ objectives include ensuring “consistency and security across open banking systems.” The central bank also said it hopes the guidelines, developed in cooperation with industry stakeholders, will promote competition and improve access to financial institutions.
Open Banking Registration
First, the CBN announced that it will offer and maintain an Open Banking Registry (OBR) that will serve as a repository for the industry.
“The OBR will be a public repository for the details of registered participants. Each participant shall be identified by a Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) business registration number, which shall be a unique key for the entire OBR system… The OBR shall maintain the API interface defined within these guidelines, and the API provider’s primary means of managing the registration of API users,” the CBN clarified.
Meanwhile, the CBN said in its notice that all parties are expected to “ensure compliance” with the guidelines and other regulations. The central bank said it will continue to monitor developments and “may issue appropriate guidance.”
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