Diaspora & Foreign Currency Accounts

OIB also has different types of FCY account products to its customers, after fulfilling the eligibility procedures of NBE and depending on their eligibility and demand the bank will open FCY accounts. These accounts are:-

Non-Resident Foreign Currency Accounts (NRFCY)

These types of accounts are opened for international institutions, embassies, foreign individuals, etc who reside in Ethiopia. The foreign currenct account opening request should be accompanied by a written authorization from National Bank of Ethiopia. Authorization letter will indicate name of opener, applicable type of currency the account type.

Non-Resident Transferable Birr (ETB) Account (NRT)

Non-Resident Transferable Birr Account is also non-interest bearing accounts but they are going to be maintained in Ethiopian Birr. The source of funds for NR foreign currency accounts and NR transferable Birr accounts shall be from abroad or shall only be from payments from other NR accounts.

Non-Resident Non-Transferable Birr Account (NRNT)

Non-Resident Non-Transferable birr accounts are also non-interest bearing accounts but they are denominated in Birr

Retention Accounts

According to NBE’s, eligible exporters of goods and services and recipients of inward remittances may open two types of foreign exchange retention accounts, namely:

  • Foreign Exchange Retention Account “A” for 30 % of a single transfer
  • Foreign Exchange Retention Account “B” for 70 % of a single transfer

The balance held in retention account “A” may be kept for an indefinite period of time and shall be sold fully or partly by the request of the account holder.


The balance held in retention account “B” shall only be kept up to 28 days and shall also be sold fully or partly within the period of 28 days in the inter-bank foreign exchange market. If not sold, the balance shall be automatically converted into local currency by the next working day (after 28 days).

Foreign Currency A/Cs for Ethiopians in Diaspora

All Ethiopian nationals living and working abroad for more than one year or business entities owned by non-resident Ethiopians and located outside Ethiopian territory for more than one year may open the following foreign currency accounts:

  • US Dollar
  • Pound Sterling
  • Euro

Types of Accounts for Diaspora Accounts

  • Fixed (time) Deposit Account: It is an interest bearing account with agreed maturity date.
  • Current Account: It is operated by cheque book and/or pre-arranged procedure.
  • Non-repatriable Birr Account: It is an account that may take the form of saving deposit that can be used for local payments only. Interest rate on such accounts shall be double of the   minimum saving deposit rate set by the National Bank of Ethiopia.