JAM | May 17, 2023

BOJ approves banking with NIDS

/ Our Today

Reading Time: 2 minutes
The Bank of Jamaica in downtown Kingston. (Photo: JIS)

The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) has granted approval to the National Commercial Bank (NCB) to pursue three innovative use cases that will integrate the services of the National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA).

The announcement was made by Floyd Green, minister without portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), during his contribution to the 2023/24 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (May 16).

The three use cases approved by the BOJ are face-to-face deposit account on-boarding, online deposit account onboarding with biometric authentication, and ‘know your customer’ (KYC) remediation. This development is expected to revolutionise banking processes and enhance customer convenience.

Minister Green hailed the approval as a “massive game changer” and highlighted its significance for the upcoming national identification system (NIDS). Once the NIDS is operational, NCB will have the authority to open online accounts using NIDS data, eliminating the need for customers to visit physical bank branches for account setup.

Additionally, the operationalisation of the NIRA is scheduled for this calendar year. The composition of the inaugural NIRA board is in its final stages, with most recommendations already made. The prime mkinister is expected to make an announcement regarding the board soon.

According to Green the National Identification and Registration Inspectorate (NIRI) would be established through the Electoral Commission of Jamaica. NIRI will play a vital role in ensuring the privacy and confidentiality of individuals’ identities within the national identification system.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness (left), and Floyd Green, minister without portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), unveil the design on the front of the country’s first National Identification (ID) card. The card, which is to be provided free of cost to citizens under the soon-to-be rolled-out National Identification System (NIDS), was revealed during Minister Green’s contribution to the 2022/23 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on May 24, 2022. (Photo: JIS)

In his address, Minister Green provided an update on the progress of the NIDS Regulations, stating that the Chief Parliamentary Counsel is finalising the regulations. He anticipated that the regulations would be tabled before the end of the current month.

In preparation for the islandwide rollout of the National ID, the Government plans to conduct an extensive public education campaign over the next six months. The campaign aims to inform the public about the benefits of the National ID and its various applications. The Government will utilise traditional and social media platforms, along with on-the-ground engagements such as town halls and school visits, to raise awareness and engage with citizens.

With the BOJ’s approval, NCB can now forge ahead with the integration of NIRA’s services into its banking operations, paving the way for streamlined onboarding processes and improved customer experiences.


What To Read Next