Uhuru urges Ethiopia to open up market for M-Pesa

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Wednesday June 09 2021

Uhuru in Ethiopia

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed are pictured at Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa on June 8, 2021. PHOTO | PSCU

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday evening entreated the Ethiopian authorities to eradicate into consideration opening up opportunities for cell money products and services as phase of its ongoing telecommunications liberalisation direction of.

Mr Kenyatta acknowledged the type of circulation, which would allow Safaricom #ticker:SCOM to introduce its standard M-Pesa provider within the market of more than 110 million other folks, might well perchance boost the nation’s economy and widen bag admission to to financial products and services.

“Learn have shown that enhanced bag admission to to cell financial products and services have a astronomical capacity to sever poverty as more other folks are enabled, simpler and safer financial savings and in bag, seriously influencing the more or less choices they form in life,” President Kenyatta acknowledged.

A Safaricom-led consortium obtained an $850 million (Sh91.8 billion) licence to enter Ethiopia’s underserved telecoms market.

The head of Direct, accurate through his Direct consult with in Ethiopia on Tuesday, witnessed the formal award of the working licence to the neighborhood which contains Vodafone, British pattern finance agency CDC Neighborhood and Japan’s Sumitomo.

The entry of the consortium will stay the monopoly of the Direct-owned Ethio Telecom. Safaricom will have a 56 percent stake within the consortium.

Entry into Ethiopia provides a foremost deliver opportunity for Safaricom that reported gain earnings of Sh68.67 billion within the year ended March, with M-Pesa contributing the pleasant revenue.

The financial provider was once launched on March 6, 2007.

“In Kenya, the success of M-Pesa, Africa’s, if not world, first cell money platform, is a conventional example of what possibilities lie in cell financial products and services, if fully exploited,” acknowledged President Kenyatta.

“Ladies folk, have in particular been empowered by these products and services, and are now in a space to eradicate part meaningfully within the economy, alongside men. That is an space we should always devote our collective efforts to as we bring within the digital economy,” he acknowledged.


Supreme year, Ethiopia issued a directive that finest allowed domestically-owned non-financial institutions to offer cell money provider, but has since reversed the risk.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed acknowledged closing month that the cell-primarily based fully financial products and services might well perchance be open to rivals from Could additionally subsequent year, with international companies free to fight with Ethio Telecom which not too prolonged ago launched a identical provider dubbed telebirr.

On Tuesday, Dr Abiy acknowledged the award of the telecom licence to Safaricom catalyses “inclusive prosperity”.

Liberalisation of the telecom sector is expected to boost job creation and the upward thrust of latest micro, dinky and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

Safaricom has acknowledged it is going to open operations from subsequent year following the licence nod and is expected to create over 1.5 million jobs, in line with Mr Kenyatta.

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