How, why mobile wallets can deepen financial inclusion
Access to financial services opens doors for families, allowing them to smooth out consumption and invest in their futures through education and health.
Access to credit enables businesses to expand, creating jobs and reducing inequality.
Unfortunately, in Nigeria, Financial Inclusion is a serious challenge as Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA), a financial sector development organization that promotes financial inclusion in Nigeria recently said that 60.1 million Nigerians are currently financially excluded.
That is why the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) recently authorized commercial banks to commence full operation of mobile money wallets.
The move is expected to deepen financial inclusion in Nigeria and maintain the CBN’s commitment to actualise 80% of the target by 2020.
Sam Okojere and Ahmad Abdullahi, directors of the Payments System Management Department and Banking Supervision Department respectively of the CBN, said, that the aim of the initiative is basically to complement growth in agent banking services under the Super Agent and the Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) initiative.
They also, said that the initiative is also being implemented in recognition of the increasing demand for no-frills mobile money services.
Mobile payment (also referred to as mobile money, mobile money transfer, and mobile wallet) generally refers to payment services operated under financial regulation and performed from or via a mobile device, which is a mobile phone.
Mobile payment works in just three simple steps; To send or receive money to a friend: (1) Register with a money transfer service by setting up an account and making a deposit.
(2) Use the provided short text commands to text cash to your friend’s phone number or account id, and to (3) Receive funds by requesting and accepting payments via text message.
Though there are inherent dangers of mobile banking, including the risk of getting fake SMS messages and scams, the benefits are far greater.
For instance, there is the ability to access funds anywhere, anytime saves time, improves security and provides a means for saving and managing money more effectively than traditional methods.
But it also creates an effect that drives broader economic growth.