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Credit Bureaux records 29 million registered borrowers

By on January 20, 2016

The credit bureau operators in Nigeria have continued to record steady increase in the number of registered borrowers as a total of 29,285,471 customers were captured as at October 2015.

From a mere 78,189 as at December 2010, the total number grew to 18,640,000 in June 2012.
The Deputy Director, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Steven Nwadiuko, revealed this at a workshop on awareness and education on credit reporting in Lagos on Monday.
According to Nwadiuko, the credit reporting industry in Nigeria has performed creditably notwithstanding the numerous challenges facing the sub-sector.
He pointed out that there have been significant improvements in the utilisation of credit bureaus’ products, which he said had impacted on their turnover.
“Credit Reporting in Nigeria has its antecedents in the financial crisis of the late 1980’s and early 1990s when large quantum of non-performing credits bedevilled the banking industry. That era witnessed persistently rising incidence of abandoned facilities in Nigerian banks with attendant losses and erosion of banks’ capital. To arrest the situation, the Central Bank of Nigeria in January 1998 established the Credit Risk Management System (CRMS), a public credit registry operated by the CBN that Banks were to report to and check-up all credits above N1 million.
“​The CBN is committed to providing the required regulatory support to enable the credit reporting industry to thrive in Nigeria. In the same vein, we have made it mandatory for all financial institutions to have data exchange agreements with at least two credit bureaux.
“All banks are required to obtain credit report from at least two credit bureaus before granting any facility to their customers whilst quarterly portfolio checks must also be carried out to enable them determine borrowers’ current exposure to the financial system. We also review compliance levels and in line with our zero tolerance policy for infraction, sanctioned erring institutions,” he added.
However, he pointed out that the credit reporting industry was still faced with the  challenges such as partial or irregular data submission; low compliance level; low level  of awareness about credit bureaus’ services; poor appreciation of the role of credit bureaus and requirement for obligors’ consent to share information
As part of efforts to address these challenges, he said the CBN in collaboration with other stakeholders had released common data template which harmonised the various templates issued by the credit bureaux, among others.