As the Nigerian financial services sector begins to embrace the concept of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), stakeholders have called on regulators to create the right framework for data privacy and ownership.
The stakeholders made the call on Wednesday while discussing ‘how open API is driving digital innovation and collaboration in financial services at the KPMG Digital Summit 2017 held in Lagos.
They are concerned that Nigerian banking is not able to grow as fast as what is happening in the digital world. They believe that the pace of innovation coming from numerous FinTech start-ups proves to be a little bit challenge to banks.
However, they say those banks that chose to acquire or collaborate with FinTechs have stood at an edge over others. They observe that there is high degree of collaboration between banks and FinTechs, saying more deep engaging collaborations would be seen going forward.
Olubukola Akinwunmi, principal manager, banking and payments system, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), said there would be room for improvement, adding that CBN had always been an enabler for FinTechs and would continue to be an enabler.
“We (CBN) made it possible for non-banks to come into the space. We do that through collaboration. We will look at areas where we can improve our regulation and see how we can lower cost for FinTechs,” Akinwunmi said.
Speaking on the ‘role of government and regulator in the evolution of FinTech,’ during panel session, Ade Shonubi, managing director/CEO, Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS), said sharing information with everybody is something that will improve the ecosystem.
“How do we get information together and how do we share it? Everybody should have access to information but everybody should contribute. We need to work together because it is difficult individually to scale,” Shonubi said.
Other speakers who spoke at the panel include Bunmi Akinyemiju, managing director, Venture Garden group, and Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, founder and managing director, Flutterwave, said one of the things the regulator can do is to create a floor for FinTech to taste their ideas in a safe environment.