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FirstBank says Naira-denominated cardholders cannot initiate international transactions

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Nigeria’s premier financial institution, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has advised its customers that they will no longer have access to foreign exchange for international transactions through all Naira Card types issued by the commercial bank.

First Bank sent an email to its account holders to notify them of the new development which comes after the lender previously said only FirstBank Travel Card will now receive Personal Travel Allowance (PTA) and Business Travel Allowance (BTA).

In the email titled, ‘Review of cross-border limit on Naira Card’, FirstBank customers were told that only dollar cards will now be used for foreign transactions, with a maximum of $10,000.

The commercial bank cut Naira Mastercard and Naira Credit Card access to foreign exchange for international transactions, blaming the current scarcity of forex in the Nigerian official foreign exchange market.

It was gathered that Virtual card, as well as Visa Prepaid Naira card were also restricted from being used by First Bank account holders to transact on international market – leaving only customers with dollar card to make such transactions.

The cards allowed for international transactions includes; Visa Debit Multicurrency Card, Visa Prepaid (USD) Card and Visa Gold Credit Card.

The statement explaining the review of the bank’s foreign exchange policy reads, “Due to current market realities on foreign exchange, you will no longer be able to use the Naira Mastercard, Naira Credit Card, our Virtual card and Visa Prepaid Naira card for international transactions. This will take effect on 30 September 2022.”

First Bank further stated, “Please use your Visa Debit Multicurrency Card, Visa Prepaid (USD) Card and Visa Gold Credit Card to continue transacting abroad with limits of up to $10,000.”

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