A recent review of Nigerian banks’ bond portfolios showed that the institutions were not directly exposed to Silicon Valley Bank, the governor of the country’s central bank has said. In addition, the governor said the Central Bank of Nigeria’s stringent guidelines help to create a “very safe” banking system.

Priority Given to Depositors

According to the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, a recent review of Nigerian banks’ bond portfolios showed that the country’s financial institutions had no direct exposure to Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). Emefiele, who made the remarks during a meeting of the bank’s monetary policy committee, added that the central bank’s so-called prudential guidelines help to ensure that only healthy banks are allowed to operate.

Some of the guidelines and considerations used by the CBN include banks’ non-performing loans (NPL), which averaged 4.2%, and the capital adequacy ratio of 13.7%. According to Emefiele, these ratios, as well as the banks’ average liquidity and loan-to-deposit ratios of 43% and 52% respectively, indicate that Nigerian banks are “very safe.”

Also, in his remarks published by Nairametrics, Emefiele implied that the central bank has and will always prioritize bank customers.

“We will rather dispose of shareholders than make depositors lose money,” Emefiele said.

To support this claim, Emefiele is quoted in the report stating no Nigerian depositor has lost money to a failed bank since 2003.

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