CBN directs BDC operators to reapply for licence, issues reviewed guidelines

In a move aimed to sanitize the foreign exchange market,  the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has issued regulatory guidelines for bureau de change operations after consultation with stakeholders.

In February, the apex bank released a ‘Draft Revised Regulatory and Supervisory Guidelines for Bureau De Change Operations in Nigeria’.

But on Wednesday, following the consultation, CBN made changes to the guidelines and also directed BDCs existing in the nation to reapply for a new licence.

“All existing BDCs and promoters of proposed BDCs are to note the following: Re-apply for a new license according to any of the Tiers or license category of their choice as provided in the Guidelines,”  said CBN.

One notable changes in the guidelines is the removal of the mandatory caution deposit of N200 million for tier-1 licence holders.

Besides, N50 million for tier-2 licence holders was removed by the apex bank.

Also, the CBN withdrew the non-refundable annual licence renewal fee of N5 million and N1 million for tier-1 and tier-2 BDCs, respectively.

The updated document also highlighted the revised permissible activities, financial requirements, corporate governance requirements and anti-money laundering/combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) provisions for BDCs.

“As part of reforms to re-position the Bureau De Change (BDC) sub-sector to play its envisioned role in the foreign exchange market in Nigeria, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) issued the Draft Operational Guidelines for BDC Operations in Nigeria in February 2024, for stakeholder comments/inputs,” the statement reads.

“Following the conclusion of the stakeholder consultations and in exercise of the powers conferred on it by Section 56 of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA) 2020, the CBN hereby issues the attached Regulatory and Supervisory Guidelines for Bureau De Change Operations in Nigeria 2024 for compliance by all operators and promoters of proposed BDCs in Nigeria.”

The Central Bank informed stakeholders that the guidelines will come into effect from June 3, 2024.

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