Banks Swing into Action, Set up Teller Points for Forex Sales

August 2, 2021
Set up Teller Points

By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel

In response to the recent directive from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that all Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) should make necessary arrangements to sell foreign currencies to retail customers, various commercial banks have swung into action and have set up teller points across their branches nationwide.

These dedicated teller points are to meet the legitimate foreign exchange (FX) demands of retail customers, following the CBN stoppage of FX sales to Bureaux De Change (BDCs).

Customers who want to buy Personal Travel Allowance (PTA), Business Travel Allowance (BTA), pay international school fees, foreign medical bills, make SME transactions and every other qualifying foreign exchange (FX) transaction, will now have to approach the banks to get them.

Business Post gathered most of the licenced DMBs have adhered to the CBN directive, including Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank) Limited, First Bank of Nigeria, United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA), Fidelity Bank Plc, Ecobank, amongst others.

Notices of the above lenders tracked by this newspaper showed that they have encouraged customers who need FX should visit their respective branches. They said the customers must be 18 years and above and have a Bank Verification Number (BVN).

Applicants must also possess a valid Nigerian passport with a valid visa and a valid international return ticket with travel date, not more than 14 days from the date of PTA/BTA purchase.

Furthermore, the PTA request is limited to a maximum of $4,000 per quarter per applicant.

Customers applying for international school fees payment can apply themselves through their parent/guardian with a valid BVN.

The banks have indicated their firm commitment to treating customer’s foreign exchange requests instantly while exchanging at the prevailing CBN rate.

“Kindly walk into any of our branches nationwide to buy your PTA. BTA, pay your international school fees, foreign medical bills, SME Form Q transactions and every other qualifying foreign exchange transaction.

“We will treat your foreign exchange requests instantly. This means that you will get your FX the same day in cash and in the case of school fees and medical bills payment, to the stipulated beneficiary offshore.

“Please note that this is subject to you providing all the required documentation for these transactions,” a notice from GTBank said.

As for First Bank, it said it would honour PTA of up to $4,000 and BTA of up to $5,000 as long as customers possess the necessary documents.

“Life can be filled with so many uncertainties and challenges however, getting up to $4,000 as your PTA and $5,000 for your BTA quarterly shouldn’t be stressful if you meet [the] criteria.

“With our Visa Debit Multi-Currency Card, you can transact business anywhere in the world, whether in Naira, Dollars, Pound Sterling or Euro, all on one debit card,” the lender said.

On its part, Fidelity Bank said to make the process easier, it has “put in place electronic transaction alert system that will provide a status update on your request,” adding that “all FX sales will be in your preferred foreign currency at the prevailing CBN rate.”

In its message to customers, UBA said it has established “dedicated teller points for FX transactions at all UBA branches nationwide,” stressing that “to be eligible, you must not have been paid a total of $4,000 or its equivalent within the quarter.”

For Ecobank, it notified its customers that all its branches had been put on notice to ensure smooth FX sales to eligible customers, assuring that their requests would be honoured timely and at competitive rates.

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