Safaricom Ethiopia through its newly established and wholly owned subsidiary; Safaricom M-PESA Mobile Financial Services PLC (Private Limited Company) received the Payment Instrument Issuer License from the National Bank of Ethiopia that enables it to avail mobile financial services to its customers under the trademark M-PESA.
Prior to issuing the license, The National Bank of Ethiopia amended the National Payment Systems Proclamation to provide the necessary regulatory framework for foreign-owned telecom operators to provide Mobile Financial Services (MFS) in Ethiopia, done in consultation with the industry players in the country.
Safaricom Ethiopia has settled the requested investment protection fee, a payment to be paid by all foreign investors for entering a sector that is protected only for local investors.
“We are delighted to receive the license to establish M-Pesa and provide Mobile Financial Services to our customers. M-Pesa comes with a tested and proven track record of enabling financial inclusion in Africa, provides services to more than 51 million customers across seven countries in Africa with a safe, secure, and affordable way to send and receive money, top-up airtime, make bill payments, get short-term loans and much more. We want to extend our gratitude to the Government of Ethiopia, the Ministry of Finance, and the National Bank of Ethiopia for the support and guidance which will allow us to contribute our share to the efforts of the Government of Ethiopia fast tracking Digital Inclusion and promoting innovation outlined in the Digital payments Strategy 2025.” says Anwar Soussa, CEO of Safaricom Ethiopia.
M-Pesa is Africa’s most successful mobile money service and the region’s largest fintech platform both for the banked and unbanked due to its safety and convenience. It also provides financial services to millions of people who have mobile phones but do not have bank accounts or limited access to banking services.
In compliance with the applicable legislation in Ethiopia, the subsidiary of Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia was set up with a 50 million Birr initial capital and will offer mobile financial services under the brand M-PESA by mid of 2023.