By NBF News

WITH an initiative to develop a robust and integrated financial system that will ensure Nigeria's aim of being part of the 20 largest economies, stakeholders in the electronic payment industry are seeking to create a comprehensive blueprint for card payment services in Nigeria.

Specifically, these stakeholders, under the aegis of Electronic Payment Providers Association of Nigeria (E-PPAN), will at its sixth Techno-Interactive Forum series, on January 25, at Eko Hotel, seek to create a five-year comprehensive blueprint for card payment services in the country and make a clear identification of factors, including policies, infrastructure and fiscal measures that will affect card growth positively in the next five years.

Other objectives to be achieved at the event which is themed, 'Payment Cards in Nigeria: Exploring the Future of Payment cards 2011-2015, include looking at an appropriate implementation model to ensure we achieve our desired targets within our planning timeframe, adopting an 'engineered growth' approach as opposed to an organic approach, implementation and operational best practices, strategies for payment cards that work with other sectors, and opportunities and areas for co-operation.

Extensive work done by Goldman Sachs (2001) believes that only Nigeria and Egypt in Africa will overtake Italy in GDP size by 2015. For Nigeria to achieve this feat and its aim of being part of the 20 largest economies she must develop a robust, vibrant and an integrated financial system that will power the new economy.

The anticipated participants for the Forum will consist of, government regulatory bodies, international payment experts, managing/executive directors of switches, banks card companies, technical experts in card business, CEOs, COOs, CMOs, issuers, acquirers, card vendors, ISO's, foot soldiers in financial institutions, merchants, telco's, CTO's, compliance officers, head of IT departments, senior security consultants, senior systems engineer, card organisations, among others.

Participants will engage in intellectual and solution oriented discourse with regard to developing strategies and methodology for creating a five-year roadmap to achieve greater efficiency and effectiveness for driving profit and innovation in the payments sector.

Industry leaders on ground to create a five year blueprint for card payment in Nigeria include the Director, Banking and Payment Systems Department, Central Bank of Nigeria A.S.F. Atoloye, Managing Director Nextzon Business Services Mac Atasie, Managing Director, Interswitch Limited Mitchell Elegbe, Executive Director, ValuCard Nigeria Plc, Agada Apochi, Managing Director, eTranzact Int'l Limited Valentine Obi, Emmanuel Moore Abolo, Henrietta Bankole-Olusina, Senior Manager, Accenture Nigeria, James Agada, Managing Director, ExpertEdge Software Division of  Computer Warehouse Group, Funmi Ajayi, Head of Cards, EcoBank Plc, Fatumata Soukouna, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Soft Solutions Limited.