The National Chairman of the Nigeria Information Technology Reporters’ Association (NITRA), Mr. Chike Onwuegbuchi has posited that Financial Technology (Fintech) has become perhaps the most exciting sector in the ICT industry, and in Nigeria as a whole.
The NITRA Chairman stated this in his welcome address at a Fintech Forum, organized by the Group in Lagos with the theme: “Harnessing Nigeria’s Fintech Potentials: Challenges And Opportunities”.
According to him, the Fintech sector is seen as the engine of financial dealings, economic growth and transactional unification, and is touted to present and aid various other sectors from the grassroots to international business/trade.
He however noted that Nigeria saw a slowdown in Fintech funding in the past few years. According to Partech Africa’s tech Venture Capital Report, Nigeria recorded $798 million in 2022 from $1.3 billion recorded in 2021.
Meanwhile, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida has noted that Fintech is gradually revolutionizing Nigeria’s financial ecosystem as it poses a great disruption to the conventional financial system.
He believes that as an emerging industry that leverages on technology to support several financial services such as mobile banking, borrowing, investment, and cryptocurrency among others, Fintech comes with a lot of business opportunities in terms of innovation, job creation and investment.
“Fintech has the potential to deepen the existing payment and financial system infrastructure to reach unserved and underserved areas and further stimulate economic growth,” Dr. Adamu, who was represented Mr. Henry Ojiokpota, Zonal Controller at NCC stated.
He added that Fintech applications such as robo-advisors, payment apps, peer-to-peer (P2P) lending apps, investment apps, and crypto apps, among others, create business opportunities for individuals with the youth population accounting for an estimated 70per percent of Nigeria’s population, the digitally savvy, young, and middle-aged individuals adopting these Fintech applications for socioeconomic gains will add value to the economy.
The Nigerian Fintech ecosystem offers a full array of financial services, which has prompted consumer protection concerns over predatory pricing and regulatory challenges in the sector. Similarly, telecommunications infrastructure, which is an enabler for Fintech services, remains an issue of concern. Statistics indicate that Broadband penetration stood at 45.57 percent as of August 2023, which is a fair progression towards the mid-term broadband target to be met in 2023. The Commission has begun implementing new strategies to meet the new target of 70 percent Broadband penetration by the year 2025 as contained in the Nigerian National Broadband Plan 2020 — 2025 which will equally explore the potential in the Fintech sector.