Since the introduction of the mobile money system in Ghana, it has eased the burden of money transfer among ordinary people who could not easily send money to one another.
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What Is Mobile Money?
The mobile money platform is a digital financial service where users can send money, receive money and even store money. It has a digital wallet that holds the money users until they decide to send it to another person, use it to purchase items or transfer it to their bank account.
Users of the mobile money service do not need to have a bank account before registering for the service. All one needs to register for the service is a valid identification card.
Ghanaians are used to the service which is now offered by all the major telecom companies in the country. The mobile money platform was initially introduced into Ghana by MTN in the year, 2009. You can also check out how to withdraw MTN moile money without an ID Card.
You might also want to read this guide taking you through ways to report MTN Mobile Money Fraud cases in Ghana.
Since then, other telecom companies have gradually joined the service as they saw that staying out would be detrimental to their existence.
MTN Ghana was the first telecom company to introduce the service in Ghana, followed by Airteltigo and Vodafone. Figures released by the central bank of Ghana revealed that the mobile money transactions in the country had gone up by 20% in 2016, amounting to $177.9 million.
Although Ghana has one of the booming economies in Africa, the urban-rural divide has made it one of the prime locations for domestic remittances.
Before the Mobile Money Service
Before the service was introduced into the country, about70% of the total population were unbanked. This means that such people had no bank account, and they had no way of sending, receiving, and saving money.
The number of people that owned a phone at the time was estimated to be about only 35%. A lot of Ghanaians migrated to urban areas to search for job opportunities. These people also had to send some money back to their families in the villages once they could secure work. The mobile money platform thus made it possible for this to happen since such individuals could not make such money transfers through the bank.
How It Operates
When the service was initially launched, it operated similarly to the traditional money transfer businesses before it. However, the telecom companies later introduced mobile agents that were instructed to help users of the service transfer or receive money from the agent’s account.
As time went on and the mobile money platform became more popular and widely sought after, the telecom companies began to register users by giving the man accounts on their mobile phones. the platform also received some support from the country’s central bank, which helped it flourish.
The central bank saw the opportunity to get banking services to more people through the mobile money platform, thereby reducing the percentage of unbanked citizens in the country. A survey later revealed that access to financial services in the country could grow by 41%.
The number of stalls used by the MTN mobile money vendors in the country outnumbered bank branches by 2015. New e-money laws, which the central bank later introduced, brought some favourable changes to the mobile money platform, such as a simple registration method for users and simplified rules of operation on the business model.
After The Invention Of Mobile Money Service
Today, the mobile money platform is the most popular financial tool available, with millions of subscribers belonging to different services run by the telecom companies in Ghana. MTN Ghana still leads the mobile money market with a more significant market share than other telecom companies.
This is because MTN made the platform famous before the other telecom companies joined. By then, MTN had gained a sizable amount of users on the platform.
Ghana was also one of the first nations to make contactless NFC payments available through mobile money. This was made possible through AirtelTigo’s ‘tap and pay’ service.