Enterprise Television – Mobile Money on the Rise in Ghana
The World Bank, along with its subsidiary the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), presented their findings on global financial inclusion, access to banks, mobile money, and other financial services.
While Ghana, and the rest of the world, have experienced significant increases in account ownership of all types of financial services, it was confirmed that mobile money has been Ghana’s backbone in financial inclusion and has spurred increases in account ownership to other financial services , held at the Kempinski Hotel, Accra.
Report reveals the current African leaders of mobile money account ownership are Kenya at 73%, Uganda at 51%, and Zimbabwe at 49%, mobile money activity in Ghana has led to an up-tick in financial inclusion.
Ghana is now one of the fastest growing mobile money markets in sub-Saharan Africa. Tanzania, an early touted African success story in regards to mobile money, begun a year ahead of Ghana and had 8 million active accounts whereas Ghana had just 350,000 in 2009, yet now 39% of adults in both countries have accounts.
A report from findex, on a presentation done by Buddy Buruku of CGAP, Ghana has been progressive with mobile money accounts with a surge of 11 million active mobile money accounts, representing a thirty times increase from 2012.
This indicates that regulatory revisions also drove the increase in mobile money activity in Ghana. Additionally, the EMI (electronic money issuers) guidelines introduced by the bank of Ghana contributed to the growth of mobile money in the country.
“The regulatory revisions that took place in Ghana were very principled in this trajectory. If you look at the data, 85% of industry growth, 71% of active account growth, 79% of transaction volume growth, and 84% of transaction value growth, all happened after the promulgation of the EMI guidelines.
“So those EMI guidelines which have been touted as really being flagship guidelines issued by the Bank of Ghana, had demonstrably lead to significant increases into the market” – Buddy said.
Meanwhile, there are 151,000 active mobile money agents in the country, also resulting in a twenty-five times increase since 2012.
It was also confirmed that the number of transactions too, stand at 82 million average per month and 7.2 average on a monthly basis per user, and these make $36.00 average transaction value and160.00 in Ghana cedi’s.
While these are still notable gaps, they are in line with developing country averages, and are lower in comparison to many other African countries.
The rise in mobile money accounts has greatly changed how people make and receive payments. Payments for work, domestic remittances, and utility payments are increasingly being completed via mobile money.
According to report, about 40% of Ghanaians work in the agriculture sector and approximately 40% of them receive payments for their goods into financial accounts, almost exclusively mobile money accounts.
While it may be logically assumed that mobile money and banks may be at odds with one another, increases in mobile money accounts have been in unison with increases in financial institution accounts. In the 2014 – 2017 period, financial institution accounts in Ghana increased by 22%, from 35% to 42% of the population having accounts.
However, Ghana has been able to boast significant growth statistics in regards to its financial inclusion. Mobile money can greatly be attributed to progressing trend, as it has been able to access populations that face the most barriers to financial account ownership. While still more the population needs to be reached, Ghana growth rates continue to be progressive.
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