Business News of Monday, 19 March 2018
At least three banks are set to commence the issuing of electronic money which will allow customers transfer money on a virtual platform.
According to the Bank of Ghana, the development forms part of efforts to reduce the use of cash and switch to a more cashlite economy.
Citi Business News understands that this development is likely to impact competition among telcos, fintechs and other players within the digital ecosystem.
The disclosure comes on the back of the completion of the new Payment Systems and Services Bill.
It is unknown, which banks have put forward the proposals.
But the Head of the Payment Systems Department of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Settor Amediku explains the model by the banks, to Citi Business News as;
“Banks can also have their own wallet, that is a virtual account also operating like how mobile money works but in this case, they will have their own agents who will accepts monies and digitally transfer the equivalent unto the customer’s wallet so he or she could go ahead with his or her transactions.”
He also indicated that some international organizations have expressed interest in entering the market and issue their own electronic money.
“When the bill is passed, not only banks but other international companies have also shown interest in creating their own wallets and have their own virtual accounts.”
Currently, three telcos; that is, MTN, Airtel Tigo and Vodafone are issuing their own electronic money.
For some, the coming on board of the three banks in issuing their own electronic money means intense competition for the already existing platforms.
Others have also viewed this as an opportunity to leap unto the 2020 cashless economy target by the government.
Already, official figures show that the volume of mobile money transactions has shot up massively; from 18,042,241 in 2012, the figure has reached 981,564,563 as at 2017.
Similarly, the value of mobile money transactions has shot up from 594,120,000 to 155,844,840,000 between 2012 and 2017.
Meanwhile Dr. Settor Amediku is confident the law will be passed as soon as possible to kick start all these plans.
“The government itself is highly committed to getting this Bill passed and we’ve had a lot of support from the economic management team. The members really expressed their willingness to support the bill and we currently have the Finance Minister and his deputies who have promised to do everything possible to ensure the Bill is passed within the shortest possible time,” he stated.