CBN launches online platform for microfinance bank licence application

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced the unveiling of a new online platform for submission of microfinance bank (MFB) licence applications, known as the CBN Licensing, Approval and Other Requests Portal (CBN LARP). The new online platform will eventually replace the current manual process wherein prospective applicants for MFB licence physically submit their applications to the CBN. In due course, the Bank will extend the platform to other categories of licences.

The online application system offers numerous benefits, including a simplified process, time savings, enhanced communication, and robust security measures. By digitising the application process, the Bank aims to improve accessibility, reduce paperwork, and expedite licence approvals, benefiting both applicants and the economy.

Consequently, with effect from September 25, 2023, MFB licence applicants are required to submit both hardcopy and online applications (via the CBN LARP) as part of a parallel run. The cover letter submitting the hardcopy application must also note a valid application reference from the online submission to be accepted.

The parallel run will end on December 31, 2023. Thereafter, manual submissions of hardcopy MFB licence applications will no longer be required and accepted.

From September 25, 2023, prospective MFB applicants are urged to log on to to submit their respective MFB licence applications. Help and detailed guidance are available within CBN LARP to assist users in navigating the new platform. A user guide can also be downloaded from the platform.

Applicants may contact the dedicated helpdesk via email at for further information.

Meanwhile, please note that the Bank shall continue to accept manual applications for all other licence types until further notice.

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