Nigerian CBDC adoption surging amid currency demonetization

Nigeria’s e-Naira saw a significant inflow of users amid the shortage of cash. 

Nigeria is a most populous African nation and it became the first African country to launch national CBDC, or say e-Naira, in Oct 2021. In the initial phase of national CBDC adoption, e-Naira saw very low attraction among the citizens. Between 2021 to 2022, only 0.5% of the population adopted eNaira as the payment option. 

Recently the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele, said that CBN minted 10 billion e-nairas in supply and at present 3.4 billion is in circulation. 

The CBN governor noted that eNaira saw significant adoption in the country over the past 2 months. 

To push the e-Naira in the country, the Nigerian government is also running a scheme for poor citizens, under which 4 million new eNaira wallets have been created. 

Emefiele said that eNaira is going under mainstream digital payment adoption, amid the cash shortage in the country. 

Nigerian Currency demonetization 

In Q4 2022, The Nigerian Central Bank started the process of demonetization in the country, and Jan 2023 was the last month for the citizens to exchange their old currencies with banks. 

The majority of the citizens are facing difficulties in getting newly designed national currency and this is causing a very big problem for them to get cash. 

In Feb of this year, many people took to the streets to protest against the Nigerian government & failure of the Nigerian Central Bank over cash shortage. Many people claimed that the central bank opted for the currency demonetization method to push national digital currency.

However the last month of this year brought a lot of negative news about e-naira but in the end, e-Naira saw a better level of adoption.

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