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Finance Access Bank CEO says MTN repaying $8.1 billion could lead to a banking crisis

The Bankers Committee may intervene in the current impasse between Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and MTN.

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Access Bank CEO says MTN repaying $8.1 billion could lead to a banking crisis play Herbert Wigwe, CEO Access Bank Plc (Youtube/Access Bank)

The Bankers Committee comprising of Chief Executive Officers of banks in Nigeria may intervene in the current impasse between Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and MTN, Africa's telco giant, over repayment of $8.1 billion, believed to have been illegally moved out of the country over 10 years.

Herbert Wigwe, Access Bank CEO, told Reuters on Thursday, August 30, 2018, “...the banking industry will hold its regular Bankers Committee meeting soon to discuss MTN’s repayment of $8.1 billion, on the orders of the CBN.”

He said he expected a resolution on the matter to avoid a systemic banking crisis given that the repayment of $8.1 billion, which is about half of MTN’s market capitalisation, could threaten its Nigerian bankers.

Chief executives of commercial banks in Nigeria regularly meet with the apex bank to discuss issues on the banking environment as well as operations and modalities of the sector.

ALSO READ: All you need to know as Nigeria’s central bank and MTN go head-to-head in new forex saga

Meanwhile, the shares of Africa’s telecoms giant, MTN Group slumped by 19%, losing about $10.8 billion on Thursday after the Central Bank of Nigeria sanctioned its local unit.

The CBN had ordered MTN and four other banks to refund $8.1 billion illegal capital repatriation.

MTN Group Ltd has denied any wrongdoing while the banks are currently in talks with the monetary authority.

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