How many times have we heard stories like “if I hadn’t had the phone, I would have spent the night on the highway” or “How did our parents without a cellphone”.
The cash transfer is one of these. And it is perhaps an instrument to invest in times of humanitarian crises. Is a service that allows you to transfer money from one cellphone to another with the possibility that whoever receives the refill can turn it into cash coin. Just go, after receiving a secret number via sms, at a distributor or any telephone company’s partners and withdraw the amount.
Also in Africa is hard to keep up with the rapidity of change in the world of technology, electronics and telephony. According to the latest estimates, over the past four years the expansion of mobile telephony in the black continent has had a rate three times higher than the world average. More and more firms that regularly operate in Africa, increasing year after year their turnover and their clients.
One of this is Orange – French telecommunications company founded in the 1990s – which established numerous locations in Europe and Africa. Such is the case with the Orange Mali: present in Mali since 2000, is the first phone company in the country with about 80% coverage of the market, and has just celebrated its fifth anniversary in support of financial transactions such as cash transfers.
Through Orange Money, and in collaboration with the Foundation Orange (which deals with development projects), the company aims to “promote economic growth and poverty alleviation”. The long-term goal of Orange is creating a “system that stimulates growth, enabling new types of transactions, including payments and transfers from Governments to its poorest citizens and those who live in rural or difficult to reach”.
This innovation, in catastrophic period that is experiencing the Evils, could be a winner. There are many people from the North of the country (in the hands of the Islamists of the Ansar Order and AQMI, Mujao), receive money – through cash transfers – to escape and take a means of transport that will bring in the southern regions and in the capital.
Also other financial services firms are trying to enter the market of mobile payments. Last month, the United States Agency for international development (USAID) announced a partnership with Citi (u.s. Agency financial services) to expand mobile services monetary who ousted from the formal financial system. USAID has allocated 23 million dollars for the creation of training programs in Colombia, Haiti, Indonesia, the Philippines and Kenya and will reach a further nine African countries.
It is to be hoped that the dissemination and the increasing sophistication of mobile money systems in developing countries don’t stop and be sustained. In periods of ‘ normality ‘, constant access to finance for the unbanked could allow the inhabitants of the developing countries to develop strategies, skills and growth mechanisms. In emergency situations, these outlines initiatives unfortunately as the only way out for many citizens of that country.
July 31, 2012