HomeSend and the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia have entered a new remittance deal to allow more than 100 million Ethiopians to send funds to any mobile number in the East African country.
The new deal will, by the end of the year, allow consumers to send money to and from mobile money accounts at no costand at a much lower cost via payment cards, bank accounts or cash outlets, regardless of their location or that of the recipient.
“We are committed to helping develop a more inclusive economy, and displacing cash in Ethiopia and across Africa. It’s through digital payment solutions such as HomeSend that we are financially empowering people who need it the most,” said Daniel Monehin, Division President, Sub Saharan Africa, Mastercard.
“Cash remains the biggest barrier to financial inclusion in Africa. By empowering communities through technology, we provide access to formal financial services which brings with it the opportunity to prosper.”
Estimated to be a US$ 3.5 billion industry in Ethiopia, remittance services provides citizens with access to a safe and convenient financial solution, bridging the gap for those previously excluded from the formal financial sector. According to the World Bank Global Financial Inclusion database, only 22 percent of adults in Ethiopia have a financial account with a formal financial institution.
In the 2016 Financial and Digital Inclusion Project (FDIP) Report it was highlighted that the National Bank of Ethiopia has established several financial inclusion goals in areas such as digital financial services, financial literacy, and payment systems. In 2014, it established a Financial Inclusion Council (FIC) to advance on inclusive financing and centralize the services offered by various bodies.
HomeSend is a JV created by Mastercard, eServGlobal and BICS that enables B2B cross-border and cross-network value transfers through a single connection.