The first quarter (Q1) transactions record of the electronic payment (e-payment) channels across the country, showed a shortfall of N5.13 trillion at N34.02 trillion, against N39.15 trillion recorded in Q4 of 2018.The development, according to an industry source, is an indication of falling purchasing power and increasing poverty, as well as scepticism that trailed network failures across e-payment channels in the period under review.
The e-payment channels include the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Instant Payments (NIP), Automated Teller Machine (ATM), Point of Sale (PoS), electronic cheque truncation, mobile cash, electronic bills pay, web and mobile payment, among others.
“You can only spend when you have the money, and your ability will depend more on what the available fund can buy. There is poverty in the land. Take note, these electronic channels, despite their convenience, experienced hitches, many of which are yet to be resolved. Certainly, the records must take a hit,” the source said.
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s banking sector remains hugely exposed to the oil and gas sector with N3.49 trillion facility in the period under review, out of the N15.21 trillion total credit to the private sector by the industry.The manufacturing sector got credit allocation of N2.23 trillion to record the highest credit allocation as at the period under review.
However, while the banking sector’s total credit to the private sector was flat when both quarters are compared, the oil and gas sector’s exposure showed a marginal decrease from N3.55 trillion in the Q4 of 2018, to N3.49 trillion in Q1 of 2019.
Specifically, a total volume of 557.1 million transactions, valued at N34.02 trillion was recorded in Q1, as data on e-payment channels in the Banking Sector revealed, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
This was in contrast to 616.53 million transactions, valued at N39.15 trillion, recorded in Q4 of 2018.Like in the previous quarter, the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Instant Payments (NIP) transactions dominated the volume of transactions, with 232.82 million deals valued at N24.17 trillion in Q1.The transactions however, showed an increase of 4.61 million transactions from 228.21 million deals valued at N23.57 trillion recorded in Q4 of 2018.
Among the top 10 e-payment channels that recorded huge transactions in Q1 were NAPS, with N6.15 trillion; Automated Teller Machine (ATM), N1.54 trillion; and cheque truncations, N1.15 trillion. Others were Point of Sale (PoS) terminals, N633.81 billion; mobile cash, N183.44 billion; ebillspay, N141.64 billion; web, N107.64 billion; and mobile payment, N100.69 billion.
Also, among the top 10 receivers of banks’ credit in the period under review were government, N1.36 trillion; oil and gas (services), N1.13 trillion; finance, insurance and capital market, N1.12 trillion; and trade/general commerce, N1.02 trillion.Others were general, N976. 49 billion; agriculture, N638.46 billion; construction, N622.27 billion; real estate, N596.4 billion; information and communications, N590.27 billion; and power/energy, N393.23 billion.