Central Bank of Nigeria – All You Need to Know

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Central Bank of Nigeria
Central Bank of Nigeria

Statement of Core Mandate

The mandate of the Central Bank of Nigeria () is derived from the 1958 Act of Parliament, as amended in 1991, 1993, 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2007. Listen to the Audio Version of the 2007 Act

The CBN Act of 2007 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria charges the Bank with the overall control and administration of the monetary and financial sector policies of the Federal Government.

The objects of the CBN are as follows:

  1. ensure monetary and price stability;
  2. issue legal tender currency in Nigeria;
  3. maintain external reserves to safeguard the international value of the legal tender currency;
  4. promote a sound financial system in Nigeria; and
  5. act as Banker and provide economic and financial advice to the Federal Government.

Consequently, the Bank is charged with the responsibility of administering the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA), 2020, with the sole aim of ensuring high standards of banking practice and financial stability through its surveillance activities, as well as the promotion of an efficient payment system.

In addition to its core functions, CBN has over the years performed some major developmental functions, focusing on all the key sectors of the Nigerian economy (financial, agricultural, and industrial sectors). Overall, these mandates are carried out by the Bank through its various departments.

Understanding the Functions of the Central Bank of Nigeria

Here is an introduction and overview of Understanding the Functions of the Central Bank of Nigeria: Introduction: Role in Monetary Policy, Regulated Banking Sector Supervision and Currency Issuance and Management, as well as Management of Foreign Reserves as Key Functions towards Promoting Financial Stability with Developmental Functions as Key. Collaboration between government agencies and international bodies.

Central Bank Challenges Presented By These Bodies: Prospect of Future Success for Central Bank: Conclusion Presented Here are Some Considerations on Collaboration With Government and International Bodies by Central banks, as Well as Their prospects for development and success. Eventually Presented below is the Conclusion from that document

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) plays a pivotal role in the country's financial system, overseeing various functions to ensure monetary stability and economic growth. Understanding the functions of the Central Bank of Nigeria is essential for grasping how it influences the country's financial landscape. The CBN functions as the primary regulatory authority in Nigeria's banking sector, responsible for formulating and implementing monetary policies to achieve macroeconomic objectives.

Furthermore, the CBN acts as the banker to the government, managing the state's finances and serving as a financial advisor on economic matters. It also supervises and regulates financial institutions to maintain a stable and sound banking system. The central bank is entrusted with the responsibility of issuing and regulating the national currency, ensuring the integrity and stability of the Nigerian .

Moreover, the CBN manages the country's foreign exchange reserves, facilitating international trade and maintaining exchange rate stability. The central bank also promotes financial inclusion by implementing policies to ensure access to financial services for all segments of society. Understanding these functions is crucial for policymakers, economists, and the general public to comprehend the role of the Central Bank of Nigeria in steering the country's economic trajectory and ensuring financial stability.

The Role of the Central Bank in Monetary Policy

The Central Bank of Nigeria plays a crucial role in formulating and implementing monetary policy to achieve specific economic objectives. Here are the key functions and responsibilities of the central bank in this regard:

  • Setting Interest Rates: One of the primary tools used by the central bank to influence the economy is through setting interest rates. By adjusting the interest rates, the central bank can control the supply of in the economy, thereby influencing inflation, economic growth, and employment levels.
  • Managing Inflation: The central bank aims to maintain price stability within the economy by keeping inflation rates within a target range. Through its monetary policy decisions, such as adjusting interest rates and reserve requirements, the central bank works to control inflationary pressures.
  • Regulating the Supply: Controlling the supply is essential for maintaining economic stability. The central bank monitors and regulates the money supply to ensure that there is enough liquidity in the economy to support growth without leading to excessive inflation.
  • Stabilizing Exchange Rates: The central bank also plays a role in stabilizing the country's exchange rates. By buying and selling foreign currencies, the central bank can influence the value of the national currency in international markets, helping to maintain a stable exchange rate.
  • Supervising Financial Institutions: In addition to its monetary policy functions, the central bank also supervises and regulates financial institutions to ensure the stability and soundness of the financial system. This oversight helps to maintain public confidence in the banking sector and overall financial stability.

Overall, the central bank's role in monetary policy is crucial for steering the economy towards sustainable growth while maintaining price stability and financial system integrity.

Regulation and Supervision of the Banking Sector

  • The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) plays a crucial role in the regulation and supervision of the banking sector in the country.
  • One of the primary functions of the CBN is to ensure the stability and soundness of the banking system.
  • The CBN achieves this by setting regulations and guidelines that banks must adhere to, such as capital requirements, liquidity ratios, and risk management practices.
  • Through regular inspections and audits, the CBN monitors the activities of banks to identify any potential risks or violations of regulations.
  • The CBN also has the authority to issue banking licenses, regulate mergers and acquisitions in the banking sector, and intervene in failing banks to safeguard depositors' funds.
  • In addition to regulating commercial banks, the CBN also oversees other financial institutions, such as microfinance banks, mortgage banks, and development finance institutions.
  • The CBN collaborates with other regulatory bodies, like the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), to ensure the overall stability of the financial system.
  • The ultimate goal of the CBN's regulation and supervision of the banking sector is to promote financial stability, protect depositors' funds, and maintain public confidence in the banking system.

Currency Issuance and Management

  • The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is responsible for the issuance and management of the country's currency, the .
  • It has the sole authority to issue currency notes and coins in Nigeria.
  • The CBN ensures an adequate supply of currency to meet the needs of the economy while also maintaining the integrity and security of the currency in circulation.
  • Through its currency management functions, the CBN aims to promote price stability and economic growth.
  • The central bank monitors and manages the circulation of currency to prevent inflation or deflation in the economy.
  • It also works to combat counterfeiting and ensure that the currency in circulation is genuine and of high quality.
  • The CBN oversees the distribution of currency through commercial banks and other financial institutions across the country.
  • It also collaborates with law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute individuals involved in illegal currency-related activities.
  • Additionally, the CBN sets and regulates the exchange rate of the Naira against foreign currencies to maintain stability in the foreign exchange market.
  • Overall, the currency issuance and management functions of the CBN play a crucial role in maintaining monetary stability and fostering economic development in Nigeria.

Management of Foreign Reserves

The Central Bank of Nigeria plays a crucial role in managing the country's foreign reserves. These reserves consist of foreign currencies, precious metals, and other assets held by the central bank to support the value of the local currency and ensure stability in the foreign exchange market.

  • Diversification: One of the key functions of the central bank is to diversify the composition of foreign reserves to reduce risks. By holding a mix of different currencies and assets, the central bank can mitigate the impact of exchange rate fluctuations and market volatility.
  • Maintaining Adequate Levels: The central bank is responsible for maintaining adequate levels of foreign reserves to meet the country's external obligations, such as servicing foreign debt, supporting imports, and cushioning against external shocks. A sufficient level of reserves helps instill confidence in the local currency and the economy as a whole.
  • Strategic Investments: The central bank may also invest foreign reserves in assets that offer attractive returns while ensuring liquidity and security. These investments can generate additional income for the central bank, thereby contributing to the overall stability of the financial system.
  • Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market: The central bank uses its foreign reserves to intervene in the foreign exchange market to stabilize the exchange rate and prevent excessive volatility. By buying or selling foreign currencies, the central bank can influence the value of the local currency and maintain orderly market conditions.
  • Risk Management: Managing foreign reserves involves assessing and managing various risks, including currency risk, liquidity risk, and market risk. The central bank employs risk management techniques to safeguard the value of foreign reserves and protect against potential losses.

In summary, the effective management of foreign reserves by the Central Bank of Nigeria is essential for supporting the stability of the local currency, meeting external obligations, and promoting overall economic resilience.

Promotion of Financial Stability

The Central Bank of Nigeria plays a crucial role in promoting financial stability within the country. To ensure a stable financial system, the central bank implements various policies and regulations. These measures are aimed at safeguarding the integrity of the financial sector, protecting the interests of consumers, and maintaining overall economic stability.

Key Functions in Promoting Financial Stability:

  • Regulation and Supervision: The CBN regulates and supervises financial institutions to ensure they operate within the set guidelines. By monitoring these institutions, the central bank can identify and address any potential risks to the financial system.
  • Lender of Last Resort: In times of financial distress, the central bank acts as a lender of last resort to provide emergency liquidity to financial institutions. This helps prevent bank runs and systemic crises that could destabilize the economy.
  • Macroprudential Policy: The CBN formulates and implements macroprudential policies to prevent excessive risk-taking and build resilience in the financial system. By setting capital requirements and stress-testing banks, the central bank can mitigate systemic risks.
  • Crisis Management: In the event of a financial crisis, the central bank takes necessary actions to restore stability. This includes providing liquidity support, facilitating the resolution of failing institutions, and coordinating with other regulatory bodies.
  • Financial Stability Reports: The CBN regularly publishes financial stability reports to assess the health of the financial system. These reports provide valuable insights into potential risks and vulnerabilities, guiding policymakers in their decision-making processes.

Overall, the promotion of financial stability is paramount for sustainable economic growth and development. By fulfilling its mandate in this crucial area, the Central Bank of Nigeria plays a pivotal role in maintaining a sound and resilient financial system.

Developmental Functions

  • One of the key functions of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is to promote economic development through various monetary policies and initiatives.
  • Implementing policies that support the growth of the financial system and enable sustainable economic development in Nigeria is a crucial aspect of the CBN's role.
  • The CBN also works to foster a stable financial environment conducive to investment, innovation, and overall economic growth.
  • In an effort to promote financial inclusion, the CBN works to ensure that all individuals and businesses have access to financial services, thereby supporting economic development at all levels.
  • By regulating and supervising financial institutions, the CBN plays a significant role in maintaining a stable and sound financial system, which is essential for economic development.
  • The CBN engages in initiatives to promote small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by providing them with access to financing and support for growth and development.
  • Supporting sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, and other strategic industries is also a part of the developmental functions of the CBN, aiming to boost economic growth and diversification.
  • Through its developmental functions, the CBN plays a vital role in advancing the overall economic development goals of Nigeria and supporting sustainable growth across various sectors of the economy.

Collaboration with Government and International Bodies

  • The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) collaborates closely with the Nigerian government to achieve economic stability and growth.
  • The CBN works with government agencies to formulate monetary and fiscal policies that are conducive to sustainable economic development.
  • This collaboration ensures that the CBN's actions are aligned with the government's overall economic objectives.
  • The CBN also engages with international bodies, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, to exchange ideas and best practices.
  • By collaborating with international organizations, the CBN gains access to valuable resources, expertise, and global economic insights that help inform its policy decisions.
  • These partnerships enable the CBN to stay abreast of international developments and align Nigeria's economic policies with global standards.
  • Through collaboration with government and international bodies, the CBN plays a vital role in promoting economic stability and sustainable growth in Nigeria.

Challenges Faced by the Central Bank

  • The Central Bank of Nigeria faces several challenges in carrying out its functions effectively:
  • Inflation Control: One of the primary challenges for the Central Bank is to control inflation within the country. High inflation rates can erode the purchasing power of the population and destabilize the economy.
  • Exchange Rate Stability: Maintaining a stable exchange rate is crucial for economic growth. Fluctuations in the exchange rate can impact imports, exports, and overall economic stability.
  • Unemployment: Addressing high unemployment rates is another challenge for the Central Bank. Inadequate job opportunities can lead to social unrest and hinder economic development.
  • Financial Stability: Ensuring the stability of the financial system is essential for sustainable economic growth. The Central Bank needs to monitor and address risks within the financial sector to prevent crises.
  • Regulation and supervision: Overseeing the banking industry and enforcing regulations are ongoing challenges for the Central Bank. Effective regulation is needed to safeguard depositors' funds and maintain the integrity of the financial system.
  • Technological Advancements: Keeping up with technological advancements is crucial for the Central Bank to enhance its operations and services. Embracing digital innovations while ensuring security and data protection poses a continuous challenge.
  • Public Trust: Building and maintaining public trust in the Central Bank's policies and decisions is vital for its credibility. Transparency and effective communication are key to establishing public confidence in the institution.

These challenges require the Central Bank to adopt strategic measures and policies to navigate complex economic landscapes successfully.

Contact Us

The Central Bank of Nigeria is open for Monday through Friday, except on national holidays. Our working hours are from 8:00 . a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Complaints Against Financial Institutions: cpd@cbn.gov.ng
Forex Helpdesk forexcomplaint@cbn.gov.ng
Ethics & Anti-Corruption: ethicsoffice@cbn.gov.ng
Website/Technical Issues:
Issues on CBN Branches: tellbod@cbn.gov.ng
Note: Mailing or calling us means you accept the terms in our email disclaimer.


Phone: +234 700 225 5226
Authorized Dealer inquiries: +234 9 462 37804, or
+234 9 462 37802
Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS): +234 9 46237602
Ethics & Anti-Corruption Helpline: +234 9 462 39246
+234 9 462 36000
Forex Helpdesk: +234 9 462 37827,
+234 9 462 37831

Letters/Our Location:

Central Bank of Nigeria,
Plot 33, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Way
Central District,
Cadastral Zone,
Abuja, Federal Capital Territory,
NigeriaP.M.B. 0187,
Garki Abuja.

Fraudulent Emails, Identity Theft and Financial Fraud

The Central Bank of Nigeria is aware that its name and that of some of its staff are being used to validate a range of different forms of fraud perpetrated against innocent third parties. The identity theft element of these scams can include fraudulent emails, the replication of faxes from the Bank, copies of our website and the creation of a false telephone switchboard.

Whilst the Central Bank of Nigeria can take no responsibility for losses arising from such sites, services or documents, we are dedicated to the task of playing our part in reducing identity theft and fraud.

If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of any correspondence purporting to be from the Central Bank of Nigeria, please do not hesitate to see our If you have received what is obviously a fraudulent email purporting to be from the Bank, it is important that you do not access any links within it, disclose any personal information, or reply to it.


  • The Central Bank of Nigeria plays a crucial role in the country's financial and economic stability.
  • Its primary functions include controlling inflation, maintaining exchange rate stability, and promoting economic growth.
  • Through its monetary policy tools, such as interest rates and reserve requirements, the CBN influences the money supply in the economy.
  • The CBN also regulates and supervises financial institutions to ensure a sound and stable financial system.
  • In recent years, the CBN has implemented various initiatives to enhance financial inclusion and promote sustainable economic development.
  • Understanding the functions of the Central Bank of Nigeria is essential for policymakers, financial institutions, and the general public to grasp its impact on the economy.

Overall, the Central Bank of Nigeria is a key institution for steering the country's financial sector and promoting economic growth. Its multifaceted roles, from regulating financial institutions to implementing monetary policies, are all aimed at maintaining stability and fostering sustainable development. As the Nigerian economy continues to evolve, the functions of the CBN will remain critical to shaping the financial landscape and achieving long-term prosperity.


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