Four major banks in Nigeria have barred their customers from using debit and credit cards to withdraw dollars, Euros, pounds and other foreign currencies whenever they travel abroad.
This development may put businesses and leisure travellers, who may need foreign currencies to meet some of their needs abroad in a difficult situation.
Students who are studying abroad often rely on withdrawing hard currencies with their Nigerian Debit and credits cards from Automatic Teller Machines abroad to meet certain needs. This is going to be challenging at this time.
According to Punch Nigeria the naira volatility of the past year made many of the Nigerian banks to get their fingers burnt and the fear of losing heavily to possible future currency volatility was making them to exercise restraint in reactivating overseas ATM withdrawal services for their customers.
According to top bank anonymous worker,“Each bank has various reasons for not yet activating their overseas ATM cash withdrawal service. For some banks, they ran into losses last year when the naira fell and, as such, they are trying to minimize their risks now.
“Some others banks are not ready to reactivate the service because they are trying to check customers who are doing round-tripping. It is for various reasons that the banks are not stopping yet.”
Banks that banned ATM money withdraw abroad
The four major banks that stop use of ATM abroad are;
- Guaranty Trust Bank Plc,
- Fidelity Bank Plc,
- Stanbic IBTC Bank and
- Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria
Following the crash in global oil prices, the drop in Nigeria’s foreign exchange revenue and the resultant dollar scarcity that hit the economy had made the local banks to suspend the ATM cash withdrawal and the POS services abroad. They also stopped web transactions.
However, following the improvement in forex supply early this year, some banks announced the resumption of the services.
Banks that accept ATM withdrawal abroad
Some of the Nigerian banks that permit the use of ATM abroad include;
- United Bank for Africa Plc,
- First Bank of Nigeria Limited.
- Zenith Bank Plc, Ecobank Nigeria and Skye Bank Plc have announced that their customers can do the ATM cash withdrawal, the POS and web transactions.
Some other Nigerian banks, which are yet to resume full ATM services, claimed that the regulator was not giving them approval to do so.
There is a need for some of these Nigerian banks to see reasons why they have to allow the use of ATM abroad.