Sterling Bank announces new transfer option for Nigerian diaspora

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Daniel Webber
Daniel Webber
Founder & CEO
Daniel is Founder and CEO of FXcompared and FXC Intelligence and has 18 years of experience in the international finance world focusing on cross-border payments, technology and the property sectors.… Read more
  • Sterling Bank has announced a new transfer service that will be known as ‘Switch’ and will be free of charge in terms of transaction charges.
  • The service will be aimed at customers who are based around the world in the Nigerian diaspora, and the free offer will only be in place for the first half a year for now.
  • A leading figure at Sterling Bank explained that the move came about as a result of the company’s recognition that there are significant barriers to financial inclusion for Nigerians around the world.

Sterling Bank has announced that it will offer a new free-of-charge international money transfers service to Nigerian people living around the world.

The firm said that the service, which will be aimed specifically at the Nigerian diaspora around the world, will be free of charge in terms of transaction charges.

In practice, this will mean that the transaction charge is 0%.

Customers will, however, have to use a Naira debit card in order to fill their accounts before they can benefit from the fee-free arrangement.

The offer will only be for six months at first.

However, the firm said that the offer is intended to help include more Nigerians in the financial system and to help build more accessibility.

It also shared some other details about how the proposed system would work.

It said that it will provide the service as a mobile application on two different operating systems – the Apple operating system and also the Android equivalent.

In terms of compliance, meanwhile, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) regulator has approved the service.

Customers will be protected by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) if they placed funds in the bank’s accounts.

In a statement to the press, a leading figure at the company said that customers using the Switch service will be able to perform a whole host of financial functions using the card.

These include everything from settling bills to dealing with investments and payment requests.

“Switch enables the processing of everyday banking and financial services such as the payment of bills, funds transfer, payment requests, investments, asset financing and insurance services, among others, in their preferred currencies,” said Shina Atilola, who is Sterling Bank’s divisional head for retail and consumer banking.

He went on to paint a bleak picture of the past situation in Nigeria, where many people have found themselves excluded from methods of traditional banking and financial services.

“Over the years, Nigerians in the diaspora have often had difficulties funding their Nigerian bank accounts using international bank cards due to high charges, and inability to perform seamless online transactions without recourse to the bank or its agents for money exchange, among others” he said.

The firm made this announcement to the press on Wednesday of this week.

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