As part of efforts by banks and mobile operators to increase the use of mobile money transfers in Kenya – ahead of proposed tariffs to be levied on all mobile transfers in the country, Barclays Bank of Kenya announced that it was offering Pingit mobile money to expedite services in the East African country.
The move will enable users in the UK to send money directly to Kenya via their mobile hand device, which the company said would “boost mobile commerce and Diaspora remittances.”
According to the UK bank, “Barclays is the first bank in the world to launch an international fee-free mobile money transfer service.”
Barclays Bank’s Managing Director Adan Mohamed said the bank “is planning to roll out the service across twelve African countries by the end of the year and expand into Europe in early 2013.”
But in Kenya, there are worries that the government’s proposed ten percent levy on all mobile money transfers could adversely affect the sector, which has been growing dramatically over the past year.
Telecom operators have urged the central government and the telecom regulator to rethink the taxes in order to spur economic growth and investment in the country. They argue that with the new tariffs in place, the costs will be passed onto customers.`