In light of the recent circular from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) advising financial institutions to close bank accounts held by cryptocurrency service providers, Luno has unfortunately been forced to pause all Naira withdrawals and deposits.
We’re working hard to resolve this issue as quickly as possible. This is an ongoing situation, so please keep an eye on our status page for all updates.
Rest assured - your funds are completely safe. You can still use the funds in your Naira wallet to buy, sell or store cryptocurrency. Sending and receiving crypto also works as per usual.
To help you find answers, we’ve compiled a list of questions that others have already asked.
Frequently asked questions
Can I deposit funds using other methods, such as PayPal?
Not at this time, no. We’re currently working closely with the CBN, regulators, and our payment partners with the aim of finding the best possible outcome for our Nigerian customers. We will then explore all options available to us.
Can I still trade using the Luno platform and exchange?
Absolutely. The circular from CBN is aimed at stopping banks from engaging with cryptocurrency providers. Currently, this only prevents Nigerian customers from depositing and withdrawing. Otherwise, your account continues to operate as normal and you can continue to trade between cryptocurrencies. You can still log in to your account and use the cryptocurrency you already have in there as you normally would.
Why is the price of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies lower/higher on the Luno Exchange than other exchanges?
Luno doesn’t set the price of bitcoin or any cryptocurrencies that are available on our platform. Luno is a marketplace where traders can come to buy and sell – therefore, the prices are determined by the value traders place on cryptocurrency and the amount they are willing to buy and sell it for.
Every cryptocurrency exchange is essentially its own unique marketplace, with different traders who are buying and selling at different prices. The way that market forces work means that these prices will usually be roughly the same across the various platforms, although they will always differ slightly. Sometimes, they'll only differ by a very small amount, and other times, they'll differ a bit more.
The letter from the CBN caused a market shock. Initially, most people were trying to sell bitcoin back to Naira, so they could withdraw funds to their personal accounts. The CBN letter led to lower demand for bitcoin, and the price went down.
Now, as the price of bitcoin reaches new highs, because there aren't as many people buying/selling bitcoin in Nigeria as there were before, it can lead to periods of low liquidity causing price spikes and dips.
Does this mean Nigerian customers are permanently banned from trading cryptocurrency?
No. This is an ongoing situation and we are currently working with the CBN, regulators, and our payment partners to resolve this issue with the best possible outcome for our Nigerian customers.
At the moment, the CBN’s circular only means that our Nigerian customers will not be able to deposit and withdraw local currency into their Luno accounts, but their ability to actually interact with cryptocurrency remains unchanged.
We believe that ultimately, the best possible outcome for everyone is Nigerians being able to buy, sell and store cryptocurrency freely. However, we cannot yet say exactly what will happen in the long term.
Can I set my account to another country so that I can deposit and withdraw?
We can only change your country or currency if you have the required documentation to be re-verified in another of our supported countries.
You can find out what documents we might need here. You’d also need to have your own bank account in the country you want to be verified in.
However, until we have more information about the situation, there is no need for you to change your country of verification, and we would not advise this course of action.
Can you give me any advice on what to do with my funds, such as transferring to a US dollar account or storing it in USDC?
We’re not able to give you specific advice about what you should do with your money. We can only give you information about the options you currently have with Luno.
Store and trade your cryptocurrency with Luno until the situation is resolved. You can continue to use all your account features as normal, with the exception of depositing and withdrawing Naira. If you’re concerned about the volatility of your cryptocurrency, you can move your cryptocurrency into USDC.
Or send your cryptocurrency to a different wallet address. You can still send your cryptocurrency to wallets on other platforms. However, we would strongly recommend that you don’t send your cryptocurrency to strangers offering to withdraw your cryptocurrency for you, as they may be trying to scam you.