Central Bank of Nigeria to charge customers for using USSD services
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) have announced the introduction of new charges for customers using the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) services.
The 2 regulatory agencies said that customers will pay a flat fee of N6.98 per transaction every time they use USSD services with effect from Tuesday, March 16, 2021.
This is the outcome of the meeting between the CBN, NCC, deposit money banks and mobile network operators (MNOs) over a protracted dispute concerning appropriate pricing for the USSD pricing model for financial services which resulted in accumulated debt and a possible withdrawal of USSD services by MNOs.
This disclosure is contained in a statement jointly signed by the CBN’s Acting Director, Corporate Communications, Osita Nwanisobi; and Director, Public Affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission, Ikechukwu Adinde on Tuesday.
The joint statement stated that the new charges was part of the resolution reached at the meeting adding that a settlement plan for outstanding payments incurred for USSD services, previously rendered by mobile network operators was being worked out by all parties in a bid to ensure that the matter is fully resolved.
The statement which was titled, ‘Joint Statement By Central Bank Of Nigeria and Nigerian Communications Commission On Pricing Of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) Services’, partly read, “We are pleased to announce that after comprehensive deliberations on the key issues, a resolution framework acceptable to all parties was agreed thus:
The statement reiterated that the general public is reminded that the USSD channel is optional, as several alternative channels such as mobile apps, internet banking and ATMs may be used for financial transactions.
The CBN and NCC said that they shall continue to engage relevant operators and all stakeholders to promote cheaper, seamless access to mobile and financial services for all Nigerians,” the statement concluded.