Zimbabwe: Mobile Money transfers down 7.7%

Sep 09, 2015

However, the number of mobile money subscribers increased by 7,3 per cent.

Mobile money transfers were down in the first three month of 2015 compared to the previous quarter in Zimbabwe, new statistics from the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) have revealed.

"The total value of money transferred in the quarter declined by 7,7 per cent to $406.9 million (€3.6 million) from $445.7 million transferred in the last quarter," according to the report, seen by The Herald.

However, it added that the number of mobile money subscribers increased by 7,3 per cent to reach 5,8 million, up from 5,3 million subscribers recorded in the fourth quarter of 2014. In addition, the number of agents increased from 23 379 to 25 427.

According to figures from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, 76 per cent of the Zimbabwean population is unbanked.

Since 2009, mobile banking is bringing banking services in previously unreached areas, through platforms such as EcoCash, TeleCash, One Wallet and NettCash.

"People now understand the convenience of mobile payments and internet transactions and the market is set to continue growing," said economist Dr Gift Mugano.

"It is quite exciting to see mobile service providers coming in with this new innovation which helped to kind of bank the unbanked which the traditional banks have failed to take care of," he added.

The volume of money transfers through mobile phones in Zimbabwe increased by 80 per cent in 2014. Mobile phone penetration is at a record level of 90.3 per cent.