Why Financial Technology Is Pivotal To Nigeria’s Digital Economy Drive
TECH DIGEST – At an Information and Communication Technology stakeholders’ roundtable dialogue, the Nigerian Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami had noted that the Financial Sector is a major player in the Digital economy.
He lauded financial services especially those offered by banks as important in the efforts of the country towards Digital economy and Digital literates.
Not only is this statement but also in tandem in present day reality. With the Digital Economy drive of Nigeria, the financial technology is expected to play a huge role. For instance, many Nigerians now prefer to do banking straight from their phone or using a point of sale machine.
Many say it is easier to carry out transactions on the platforms than queuing at banks. Importantly too, Platforms such as Paystack, Flutterwave are giving new meaning for technology powered financial services in Nigeria. Saving and investment platforms such as Piggyvest among others are also winning people’s interest more from time to time.
With all this activities, not only are we witnessing expansion of services, we are also witnessing growth in the contribution of Digital services to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product.
The Financial Technology sector is targeted to improve more with the occasion of Covid-19 which does not have a known cure yet and is said to be spread through public gatherings that lead to touch or skin contact. Many persons apart from the extra stress they get to go through at banks are skeptical about patronizing physical locations due to health fears.
The presence of banks is another issue. Some areas are disconnected from banks but are captured through presence of Point of Sale Machine which is affordable to use. A respondent told this magazine that instead of spending over Three Hundred Naira(300naira) accessing the banks, he can withdraw with 100naira at the Point of Sale Machine, he also noted that going to the bank to withdraw a thousand naira can be extremely uncomfortable but it has become easier with Financial Technology.
While there is an age-long system of saving money in wooden banks, many Nigerians are fast moving to the banked population. Transactions such as transfers, payment of tuition fees, payment at stalls can now be carried out leveraging on Financial Technology platforms. It is often to see many Small and medium scale enterprises having Point of Sale machine in their shops, this has been a big pointer to creation of awareness about financial technology.
The Job creation opportunity occasioned by Financial Technology is also very commendable.
Many young Nigerians have fallen back to the business of withdrawal and saving of money, according to them, they can make more than 30,000naira a month through this.
While the drive of the Nigerian government remains pivotal, it remains important to note that the Financial Technology will continue to play a huge role in ensuring that the Digital Economy is made more solid through Financial Technology.