MTN Nigeria payments access restored by banks

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Banks have restored MTN Nigeria’s access to platforms needed for customer airtime purchases, which were temporarily halted in a tag of war over commissions.

Nigerian Minister of Communications and Digital Economy Isa Ali Pantami used Twitter to announce access to the platforms had been restored on 4 April, two days after commencing talks with the Nigerian Communications Commission and the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Bloomberg reported the spat began after MTN cut the commission it pays to banks per airtime transaction from 4.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent. The move resulted in almost all banks removing the operator from their platforms on 2 April.

MTN reportedly agreed to revert to the 4.5 per cent fee after the banks’ move resulted in its customers being unable to purchase credit using apps, USSD technology or debit cards.

GSMA Intelligence placed MTN as the largest operator in Nigeria in Q4 2020 with 77 million mobile connections, excluding IoT.

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