The Group Chief Executive Officer of Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO), Segun Agbaje, has said the affordability of data will boost financial inclusion and literacy in Nigeria.
Agbaje disclosed this at a media parley in Lagos while reacting to questions on the lingering billing and debt crisis between telecommunication companies and deposit money banks over the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) transactions.
He argued that other economies similar to Nigeria are promoting financial inclusion and literacy by making data available to citizens.
“We have all missed the rising cost of data in Nigeria in comparison to other economies like ours. We are being distracted by USSD. You want financial inclusion, you want to improve literacy, bring down the cost of data.
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“USSD is not the answer. The answer is to get the cost of data down in Nigeria. Countries like India don’t use USSD, they use mobile banking because data is affordable. Give us a technology that is data-driven and robust,” he noted.
He also stressed that the banks are not against the use of USSD but are neither willing to pay for unsuccessful transactions nor transfer the cost to the end users.
While dispelling insinuations that FINTECH companies are doing better than banks, Agbaje noted that the ‘japa’ syndrome in the industry can only be curtailed with an improved economy where the attraction of leaving the country is reduced.
He argued that the Nigerian banking industry is not as profitable as being insinuated because of inflation and devaluation.