CBN orders banks to close accounts dealing with bitcoin, other cryptos

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The Central Bank of Nigeria has prohibited the cryptocurrency systems and directed banks and other financial institutions to close accounts operating in the cryptocurrency systems.

The apex bank issued this directive in a circular sent to these financial institutions on Friday morning.

It cited a 2017 circular where it had which had cautioned the financial institutions on the risk of transactions in the cryptocurrency market.

The cryptocurrency market in Nigeria has been acquiring more users and more Nigerians fear their money in insecure with the CBN monetary policies.

However, Nigeria joins country like Bolivia, Iran, India, Bangladesh who have banned cryptocurrency over its threat to economy and usage as a payment platform to carry out shady transactions.

Here’s the statement:

“The Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) circular of January 12, 2017 ref FPR/DIR/GEN/CIR/06/010 which cautioned Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NBFIs), Other Financial Institutions (OFI) and members of the public on the risk associated with transactions in crypto currency refers.

“Further to earlier regulatory directives on the subject, the Central Bank hereby wishes to remind regulated institutions that dealing in crypto currencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency exchanges is prohibited.

Accordingly, all DMBs, NBFIs and OFIs are directed to identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.

Please note that the breaches of this directive will attract severe regulatory sanctions.

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