Travelex, ABCON target $20b diaspora remittances in new partnership

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Travelex Nigeria and the Association of bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) are scripting a strategic partnership that will enable the nation’s Bureau de Change (BDC) operator to access the more than $20 billion yearly Diaspora remittances into the country.

ABCON President, Dr. Aminu Gwadabe, disclosed this at a one-day sensitization programme organized for BDCs by Travelex Nigeria and Travelex UK, at the Hilton Hotel, Abuja.The currency dealer said Travelex and ABCON are reviewing the possibility of ABCON riding on the high-tech platform to become direct agents of International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs).

He said the digitization of the BDCs operations through the launch of ABCON Live Run Automation Portal, which has the backing of the apex bank shows readiness and commitment to full digitization of their operations to provide seamless services to forex end-users and become direct agents of IMTOs.

He said that the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) captures only six per cent of the Diaspora remittances and the rest goes under the counter without any tracing, but raised the hopes that riding on the Travelex’s platform will enable BDCs address the reoccurring complaints of poor infrastructure, which has kept the operators away from accessing the Diaspora remittances for years.

Gwadabe, who spoke on the theme: “ABCON’s Plans and Proposals for strengthening and Improving the Foreign Exchange Market viz-aviz the BDC Sub-sector in the Economy” said BDC operators are obligated by law to render daily, monthly and yearly returns to CBN.He reiterated that BDCs are licensed institutions permitted to carry on small scale foreign exchange business on a stand-alone basis, also known as authorized buyer charged with the responsibility to buy foreign bank notes, coins and travelers’ cheques (TCs) from members of the public, authorized dealers and the CBN.He said the BDCs are also authorized to sell foreign bank notes, TCs and coins up to $5,000 or its equivalent in other foreign currency (or as specified by the CBN) per transaction to members of the public.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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