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Banks, fintechs continue to adjust FX services as dollar scarcity persists

Banks, fintechs continue to adjust FX services as dollar scarcity persists
July 18
12:29 2022

As dollar scarcity persists, Access Bank says it has reviewed the process of fulfilling dollar requests for maintenance/upkeep of students in foreign tertiary institutions.

It said students schooling abroad would only have access to a maximum upkeep allocation of $1,500 per year.

The bank said this in a notice issued over the weekend.

It said the development is aimed at optimising FX allocation to meet customers’ needs.

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The bank added that it would only process applications of customers whose school fees were processed through its branches.

“Between now and December 2022, we will process only one maintenance/upkeep request yearly per applicant for a maximum amount of $1,500 and only for customers whose school fees were processed through Access Bank,” the notice reads.

“This is subject to maintenance/upkeep not having already been disbursed previously at any time this year.

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“Where the original school fees payments were settled through other banks, we will not process the corresponding maintenance/upkeep requests.

“Applicants will be advised to contact the bank that originally processed their school fees.

“All applications that meet the above criteria will be processed and disbursed within 30 days from the date of approval, confirming that funds and documents are in line with requirements and will remain subject to FX availability.

“PTA/BTA requests will be processed and disbursed subject to FX availability and within 14 days of approval.

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“These changes are designed to make the process simpler and more accessible for our customers. We will keep you updated should these processes change?”

Recently, banks adjusted their forex services by limiting the dollar spending on local cards to $20 per month.

Apart from banks, fintech companies are also adjusting their foreign exchange services amid a drop in the strength of the Nigerian naira.

Last week, Flutterwave, PayDay, Busha, and Eversend, announced the discontinuation of their virtual dollar cards.

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“We are writing to inform you that effective Sunday, 17th July 2022, all our virtual dollar cards will be unavailable for any transactions and purchases,” Flutterwave told its customers.

“This is due to an update from our card partner, which will cause the card service to be unavailable for an extended period.

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“Here is a breakdown of what to expect from 17th July: You will be unable to make online and in-store payments and purchases using your virtual dollar card(s); You will be unable to fund existing virtual dollar card(s); Your existing virtual dollar card(s) will be terminated, and the corresponding balance will be credited to your payment balance; You will be unable to create new virtual dollar card(s).”

Busha, a crypto exchange platform, also discontinued its dollar card services.

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Last week, the naira fell to N620 per dollar at the parallel market amid the lingering scarcity of the greenback.

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