Only 20% of Nigeria’s population in banking system

Notwithstanding the country’s position as Africa’s most populous country, an audit firm has disclosed that only about 20 per cent of the population is banked. The foremost audit, financial and tax advisory firm, KPMG, stated this in a report titled: ‘Africa Banking Industry Customer Satisfaction Survey,’ for April 2013. It however stated that two-thirds of the country’s population “have never banked at all before.” In a bid to increase access to financial services, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had last year launched the Financial Inclusion Strategy (FIS). The FIS is a concerted attempt to increase access to a range of financial services such as payments, savings, and bring more people into the banking system. The apex bank had identified lack of access to financial services as a challenge to the country’s growth. The KPMG report pointed out that the Nigerian banking industry is made up of 20 banks with nearly 6,000 branches, most of which are concentrated in the urban areas. It also identified the concentration of banks in urban areas as a factor that contributes to the low level of banking penetration.


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