In a keynote address at the 2023 Nigeria Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA) FinTech Forum, Dr. Aminu Maida, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), underscored the critical role played by the financial technology (FinTech) industry in fostering financial inclusion across underserved communities in Nigeria.
Represented by Mr. Henry Ojiokpota, the Controller of the NCC Lagos Zonal Office, Dr. Maida commended the theme of the forum, “Harnessing Nigeria’s Fintech Potential: Challenges and Opportunities,” citing the substantial rise in digital financial services nationwide.
The EVC emphasized that FinTech’s disruptive influence is revolutionizing Nigeria’s financial landscape, serving as an enabler for business, innovation, and job creation. He highlighted the diverse applications of FinTech, including robo-advisors, payment apps, peer-to-peer lending, investment apps, and cryptocurrencies, as engines for economic growth and opportunities.
Dr. Maida stressed the positive impact of FinTech on the youth, who constitute 70 percent of Nigeria’s population, as a catalyst for economic value addition. Referring to recent statistics indicating 220.7 million active mobile network subscriptions in August 2023, he envisioned FinTech’s potential to offer various financial services to telecom subscribers.
The NCC, under Dr. Maida’s leadership, commits to expanding telecommunications infrastructure to facilitate robust FinTech services. He affirmed the Commission’s dedication to addressing regulatory challenges and consumer concerns, emphasizing that digital technologies’ optimal utilization would extend financial services to rural and underserved populations.
Dr. Maida disclosed ongoing strategies aligned with the Nigerian National Broadband Plan 2020–2025 to achieve 70 percent broadband penetration by 2025. These initiatives, he believes, will amplify the benefits of the FinTech industry and contribute significantly to Nigeria’s goals of financial inclusion and a thriving digital economy.
In support of this vision, the NCC has implemented a Memorandum of Understanding with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to enhance payment systems and financial inclusion, aligning with the Nigeria Payments System Vision 2025. Dr. Maida assured continued support for FinTech through policy advocacy, regulatory enforcement, and collaborative efforts with relevant authorities, reinforcing the Commission’s commitment to maintaining quality service standards and uninterrupted connectivity for sustainable sectoral growth.