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MoneyGram partners Zeepay to extend mobile money, remittance services

MoneyGram partners Zeepay to extend mobile money, remittance services
Source: Ghana | Charles Ayitey | JoyBusiness
Date: 13-09-2018 Time: 08:09:50:pm

MoneyGram partners Zeepay to extend its mobile money and remittance services across the world.

The move ensures that individuals can now receive money into their mobile money wallet no matter the location even if abroad. 

Regional Head of MoneyGram, Patrick Appiah is confident this partnership will expand foreign direct investment in Ghana and also deepen financial inclusion.

Zeepay Ghana Managing Director, Andrew Takyi-Appiah, is confident this partnership will increase remittances in Ghana by $1 billion each year. 

He told JoyBusiness this partnership is indicative of the potential of local businesses in the country.

Meanwhile, director of financial sector division at the Ministry of Finance has lauded this partnership stating it gives hope to Ghana’s Fintech industry. 

Speaking to JoyBusiness, Sampson Akligoh posited the need for traditional banks to either adopt new measures to remain relevant in the wake of financial technology.

The MoneyGram-to-Mobile Wallet service allows the customer to send their remittances directly into any mobile wallet in Ghana. Key mobile wallets here include ZeePay wallets; Airtel-Tigo Mobile Money Wallets, Vodafone Mobile Money Wallets and MTN

African market: Trends in remittances

According to the World Bank, in 2017, $2.2 billion flowed into Ghana, up to 4.3% compared to 2016 what makes the country fifth largest remittances recipient in Africa. 

The inflows come mainly from the United States ($585 million), Nigeria ($395 million), the United Kingdom ($286 million), Italy ($145 million) and Germany ($115 million).

Ghana bagged $2.2 billion from remittances in 2017 from a total of $38.4 billion that Sub Saharan Africa recorded, according to the World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief.

The country was joint second with Senegal which also earned $2.2 billion from remittances last year.

The largest remittance recipient was Nigeria with remittances of $21.9 billion. Remittances to Sub-Saharan Africa accelerated 11.4 per cent to $38 billion in 2017.

MoneyGram and the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) in conjunction with Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPPS) had earlier unveiled a new digital transaction platform, which will allow users to send and receive money to over 200 countries.

At a launch ceremony in Accra, ADB’s managing director, Dr John Kofi Mensah said the new service will expand Ghana’s access to the world’s financial sector.
“The way government has been trumpeting the idea of a digital revolution, especially as trumpeted by our vice-president, a lot of issues have risen,” he said. 

“So, it was only a matter of time. This collaboration is a long thought out idea to move with the times.”

This is how it works: customers with ADB bank accounts will be offered account deposit services for easier remittances. Funds can be sent instantly via MoneyGram's online platform or at any MoneyGram agent.  

The new system will attempt to cultivate Africa’s growing remittance market. In a 2017 World Bank report, remittances to developing countries are predicted to rise 4.8 per cent to $450 billion. 

“Remittances are a lifeline for developing countries; this is particularly true following natural disasters, such as the recent earthquakes in Mexico and the storms devastating the Caribbean," said Dilip Ratha, a World Bank manager in the report. 

“These initiatives are promoting financial inclusion, convenience and improved economic development in the country,” said Bank of Ghana’s first deputy governor Dr Maxwell Opuko Afari at the launch ceremony.

Transactions will be capped at $8,000 per person, per month.

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