CBN Fines Union Bank N200m, Here’s Why

CBN Fines Union Bank N200m, Here's Why

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has fined Union Bank N200 million for breaching its cryptocurrency regulation.

Union Bank disclosed this sanction in its consolidated and separate financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2022, which was cited by BizWatch Nigeria.

This didn’t come surprisingly as the apex bank has a regulatory framework in place, that barred commercial financial institutions from allowing crypto-related transactions.

“The use of cryptocurrencies in Nigeria is a direct contravention of existing law.

“It is also important to highlight that there is a critical difference between a central bank-issued digital currency and cryptocurrencies.

“As the names imply, while central banks can issue digital currencies, cryptocurrencies are issued by unknown and unregulated entities.

“The question that one may need to ask therefore is, why any entity would disguise its transactions if they were legal,” Osita Nwanisobi, the Director of Corporate Communications, CBN, stated.

Union Bank’s financial highlights last year

Gross Earnings: up 19% to ₦208.2 billion (₦175.0 billion in 2021), driven by strong
growth in Net Interest Income.
● Net Interest Income: up 33% to ₦59.1 billion (₦44.3 billion in 2021) driven by growth in
earning assets.
● Net Operating Income after impairments: up 10% to ₦110 billion (₦99.7 billion in 2021).
● Profit before Tax: up by 47% to ₦30.2 billion (₦20.5 billion in 2021).
● Operating Expenses: marginally grew by 0.4% to ₦79.4 billion (₦79.2 billion in 2021),
reflecting tight cost control despite inflationary pressures.
● Gross Loans: up 11% at ₦1.0 trillion (₦899.1 billion in December 2021) as we expand
our lending to vital economic sectors of opportunity.
● Customer Deposits: up 9% at ₦1.48 trillion (₦1.36 trillion in December 2021) as we
expand our product base and digital channels.

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