Banks have begun to place new limits on transfers domiciliary accounts holders can make from cash their cash lodgements.
The limits range from $5,000 to $10,000, according to findings by our correspondents.
A circular from one of the banks obtained by one of our correspondents on Friday said,
“The maximum limit for foreign currency transfers by cash deposits is now $5,000 per month.
“This means that only a maximum of $5,000 monthly will be allowed for transfers if the source of funds is a cash deposit into a domiciliary account.
“Cash deposits of foreign currencies other than USD may be paid into domiciliary accounts (subject to an equivalent of $5,000 monthly limit) but will not be allowed for transfer purposes.”
It was learnt that this was in accordance with a 2020 circular of the Central Bank of Nigeria. A portion of the circular said, “Ordinary Domiciliary Accounts:
Where accounts are funded by electronic/wire transfer, account holders will be allowed unfettered and unrestricted use of these funds for eligible transactions.
Where accounts are funded by cash lodgments, existing regulation will continue to apply.”
However, a source in another bank told one of our correspondent that the transfer limit was $10,000.
Cash lodgement of up to $10,000 cannot be transferred electronically to another account but can only be withdrawn through cash, a source from one of the banks told our correspondent on Friday.
According to the source, when huge cash dollar deposit is made, it must also be withdrawn by cash.
The source said, “There is no law stopping anybody from lodging more than $5,000 or $10,000 into your account in cash. But what you need to note is that if you lodge more than $10,000 into your account, you cannot transfer that money, you can only withdraw that same cash based on availability. The bank needs to source the money to give it to you in cash.”
Scarce foreign exchange earnings had forced the banks and the CBN to adopt a number of policies aimed at preserving limited available foreign currencies.
These policies include currency swap with China and the recent naira for dollar incentive for customers that send forex through official channels.