Stop direct lending, untargeted subsidy programs and foreign exhange controls - World bank warns CBN

The World Bank has warned the central banks of Nigeria, Ethiopia, and Uganda to avoid taking any actions that might conflict with their monetary policies.


The World Bank lists these measures as “monetizing the fiscal deficit, direct lending interventions, untargeted subsidy programs, and foreign exchange controls.”


The World Bank stated the serious problem of inflation that monetary authorities in the region faced, particularly in nations that were dealing with “underdeveloped financial systems, a sizable informal sector, and a lack of coordination between monetary and fiscal policies.”


“If monetary and fiscal actions are not adequately coordinated to bring down inflation, the risk of de-anchoring inflation expectations would fuel further inflation, accelerate interest rate increases, and exacerbate the deceleration of economic activity.

In it’s Africa’s report, the world bank examines the short-term economic outlook for the continent, the development issues that are currently facing the continent, and a particular development issue.

The 2023 report attributed the inflationary issues to a number of factors, including “a global demand slowdown, eased supply chain disruptions, lower commodity prices, and stricter monetary policies.” “Eighteen countries continue to struggle with double-digit inflation despite a projected drop to 7.3 percent in 2023 from 9.3 percent in 2022.

The report focused on the effects on households, especially the poor, who spend a large portion of their income on food due to rising food and fuel prices and depreciating domestic currencies.

The report expressed concern over some countries’ efforts to consolidate their fiscal policies’ slow progress. Nearly two-thirds of the countries in the region still have fiscal deficits that are higher than they were prior to the pandemic in 2023.

The World Bank emphasized the urgent need to address these issues and the necessity of “domestic resource mobilization and efficient spending” in order to reduce the risks associated with fiscal and debt sustainability, stop inflation, and make room for development expenditures.


FG approves 173 lending apps; bars illegal digital banks

The Federal Government has approved 173 digital lending applications to operate in Nigeria.

The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has given conditional authorisations to 54 loan applications while 119 got full approvals.

The move by the FCCPC comes after years of harassment and cyber bullying that some loan app companies have reportedly unleashed on Nigerians.

The agency released a ‘Limited Interim Regulatory/ Registration Framework and Guidelines for Digital Lending 2022’ to control the digital lending market and make registration and approval a requirement for companies seeking to operate in the space.

The commission on Tuesday April 4, released a list of approved apps that can operate in the country. Companies without approvals will not be able to operate in Nigeria..

Some of the approved loan apps listed by the commission include Branch International Financial Services Limited, Fairmoney Micro Finance Bank, Pivo Technology Limited, Renmoney Microfinance Bank Limited, Carbon Microfinance Bank Limited, Creditwave Finance Limited amongst others.

Loans without the FCCPC’s approval will be removed from Play Store by Google and unavailable for download.

In November, Google Play declared updates to its Developer Program Policy, which mandated that digital money lenders in Nigeria, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Kenya must conform to regulatory rules.


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