Yesterday (30th July, 2014), Mobile Money service – EcoCash – announced a significant agreement with MasterCard that could help increase financial inclusion via electronic payments in Zimbabwe.
"The adoption of electronic payments is critical to Zimbabwe's economic development,” commented the CEO of Econet, Douglas Mboweni, in a press release. Reducing dependency on cash while increasing financial inclusion benefits the whole country including the government, industry sectors like tourism and retail, merchants and citizens," he added.
- Over three million MasterCard debit cards will be issued to mobile money provider EcoCash's customers in the next five years, as a result of this collaboration.
- This is the first time that physical MasterCard debit cards are available to people using mobile money services in Africa.
- Till date, it is also the largest rollout of secure EMV Chip and PIN payment cards in Zimbabwe.
- EcoCash seeks to provide a means to enable the 40% of Zimbabweans that are financially excluded.
- EcoCash users will now be able make use of their EcoCash funds to withdraw money from MasterCard-licensed ATMs as well as pay for goods and services at millions of merchants that accept MasterCard payment cards, both in Zimbabwe and internationally.
- This was not available for until now.
"The integration of these products and services are particularly exciting for EcoCash customers," stated Cuthbert Tembedza, CEO of EcoCash, in the same release. "We look forward to offering Zimbabweans even more ways to benefit from the security and convenience of electronic payments as they engage with, and contribute to, the formal economy."