The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) in Nigeria has registered and approved more digital money lenders, bringing the total number of approved companies to 211 as of October.
This includes 172 companies with full approval and 39 with conditional approval. The increase in approvals indicates that new companies are seeking FCCPC’s endorsement for the digital lending business, despite the industry’s tarnished reputation due to harassment and defamation of borrowers by some lenders. The FCCPC has also expanded its watchlist of loan apps from 55 to 84, targeting those suspected of engaging in unethical practices. Additionally, the FCCPC, in collaboration with Google, has delisted 45 loan apps from the Google Play Store for operating illegally in the country.
The registration of loan apps by the FCCPC began last year to address the issues of rights violations, unfair practices, and high interest rates. The CEO of the FCCPC, Mr. Babatunde Irukera, has acknowledged that the challenges faced by digital lenders in Nigeria are part of a global issue, and the registration framework aims to promote fair and transparent lending opportunities while curbing illegal and abusive conduct.