Rwanda govt punts mobile money

Rwanda’s ICT Ministry has embarked on a campaign to grow the use of mobile money.

The Ministry of Information and Communications Technology says while the use of mobile banking and money transfers has grown in Rwanda, more public awareness is needed.

The Ministry said that the country’s mobile telephony subscriber base from had risen to 4.44 million subscribers. Although mobile phones are predominantly used for voice communication, a number of new services, including mobile money transfer, mobile banking and purchase of pre-paid electricity (cash power) and pay-TV subscriber credits have been progressively introduced.  

The Ministry said: “As of December 2011,  424,326 subscribers have been registered as active users of mobile money transfer services, representing about only 9% of the total mobile subscriber base. 

While banks and mobile communications service providers are diversifying their offers in bringing new services to mobile phone subscribers through standard public advertisements, there is a need to strengthen synergies between different stakeholders in order to address the critical issue of public awareness about economical opportunities and numerous benefits offered by electronic transactions using mobile telecommunications.”

To support this growth, the Ministry of ICT, in partnership with other stakeholders including Banks, RDB, Telecom Companies, EWASA as well as local Government leaders, has initiated a National ICT Awareness Campaign focusing on public awareness about the potential offered by Mobile Money Transfers and Mobile Banking services.

Starting with Kamonyi District the awareness campaign was organized as following:

  • An interactive information session on mobile electronic transactions services targeting local Government and District opinion leaders,
  • Public awareness campaign demonstrating the benefit brought about by electronic transaction services using mobile phones. Both ICT Bus, District Telecenters and mobile users’ support stands will be used,
  • Public awareness campaign in the form of mini-expo targeting the general public and demonstrating practically how to register and utilize mobile phones for electronic money transfer, mobile banking and service payment.

The campaign will continue to the Kayonza, Rubavu and Musanze Districts.

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