On Friday, the Central Bank directed banks and other financial institutions to identify persons and entities operating cryptocurrency exchanges and close all such accounts.
The CBN stated that dealing with cryptocurrencies and facilitating payments through them is illegal in the country.
The apex bank disclosed this in a circular titled ‘Letter to all Deposit Money Banks, non-bank financial institutions and other financial institutions, noting that the order takes immediate effect.”
The circular was signed by the Director of Banking Supervision, Bello Hassan; and the Director of Payments System Management Department.
It read, “The Central Bank of Nigeria circular of January 12, 2017 ref FPR /DIR / GEN / CIR / 06 / 010 which cautioned the Deposit Money Banks, non -bank financial institutions, other financial institutions and members of the public on the risk associated with transactions in cryptocurrency refers.
“Further to earlier regulatory directives on the subject, the bank hereby wishes to remind regulated institutions that are dealing with cryptocurrencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency exchanges is prohibited.
Accordingly, all DMBs, NBFIs, and OFIs are directed to identify persons and entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.
“Please, note that breaches of this directive will attract severe regulatory sanctions.