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Exclusive: Banks CSR donations fall by 70% in 2022



Thirteen publicly listed banks in Nigeria spent a sum of N7.2 billion on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in 2022, a notable 70% decrease compared to N23.9 billion incurred in the previous year.  

This is according to data tracked and compiled by Nairalytics, the research arm of ThePressNG from the audited reports of the banks. 

Corporate social responsibility is a way for businesses to contribute to the social, economic, and environmental well-being of their stakeholders and society at large.

CSR can also enhance the reputation, brand value and customer loyalty of businesses, as well as attract and retain talent. 

Businesses are urged to allocate a portion of their earnings for philanthropic purposes in line with their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) guidelines.  

While certain donations may be eligible for tax deductions, others may not. In Nigeria, companies have the discretion to determine the recipients, timing, and manner in which they make charitable contributions. 

However, CSR is not without its challenges and costs. In Nigeria, where the banking sector is one of the most profitable and influential sectors in the economy, CSR spending has been declining in recent years, especially in 2022. 

The sharp decline may be attributed to banks prioritizing their expense line following the harsh business environment across the world and the Nigerian economy.

The pressure from shareholders and regulators to improve returns on equity and capital adequacy ratios.  

Nigerian banks face stiff competition from fintechs and other non-bank financial institutions, as well as regulatory headwinds such as higher cash reserve requirements and lower interest rates. 

These factors have impacted on profit margins, leading to a cautious approach towards discretionary spending.

The banks were able to reduce their cost-to-income ratio to an average of 65.8% in 2022 compared to 65.95% recorded in the previous year.  

Further analysis showed that profit marginally increased by 6.4% year over year from N1.07 trillion to N1.01 trillion. 

Meanwhile, despite this downturn the likes of Zenith Bank, Access Bank, and UBA led the list of banks with the highest charity donations in the review year, surpassing the N1 billion mark. 

GTCo – N488.7 million 

GT Bank incurred a sum of N488.71 million on donations and charitable gifts, an 82% decline compared to the previous year’s N2.7 billion. The donations were spread towards community development, education, and others. 

Notable donations under community development include support for people living with autism (N87.79 million), support for healthcare, water and sanitation provision for families in Lebanon (N77.8 million), and provision of basic healthcare for underprivileged children in partnership with SRC (N45.2 million). 

In terms of education, GT Bank donated N93.9 million towards the sponsorship of the NUGA Games, which is a school sports tournament. N48.2 million was also donated towards financial literacy training for schools, while N12.3 million went towards the support for risk awareness and prevention conferences. 

Others include support for UNEP and Africa’s largest musical concert. 


FBN Holdings recorded a total CSR expense of N741 million in 2022, representing an 83% drop compared to N2.71 billion recorded in the previous year. 

It is worth noting that FBN Holdings as a company did not make any donations during the review year. However, the subsidiaries of the company that are operating entities, including First Bank of Nigeria made donations to various worthy causes. 

United Bank for Africa (UBA) spent a sum of N1.34 billion on corporate social responsibility in the review year, slightly lower than the N1.41 billion recorded in the previous year. According to findings by ThePressNG Research, UBA’s cost-to-income ratio dropped slightly to 59.1% in 2022 from 62.7% in the previous year. 

The bank’s profit also surged by 43.5% to N170.3 billion in the year under review.