CBK reinstate bank-to-mobile money transfer charges

By Obegi Malack


The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has announced reinstatement of charges on transactions between mobile money and bank accounts starting January 1, 2023.

The charges were waived on March 16, 2020 as part of the emergency measures to encourage the use of mobile money at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a notice on December 6, CBK said the reintroduced charges will come to effect on January 1, 2023.The regulator slashed the charges by around half.

“The revised maximum charges for transfers from bank accounts to mobile money wallets will be reduced by on average up to 61 percent, and mobile money wallet to bank account by on average up to 47 percent,” part of the CBK statement read.

The regulator stated that tariffs for paybills that are used to collect and disburse funds by businesses, companies and institutions will be reduced on average 50 percent while charges levied by banks for banks to mobile money transactions will be reduced by on average 45 percent.

The resumption of the revised charges is aimed at building on the gains made, facilitating a transition towards sustainable growth of mobile money ecosystem and ensuring affordability of payment services for Kenyans.

The banks used to charge between Sh30 and Sh197 before the waivers were introduced.

The waiving resulted in a significant expansion of the payments ecosystem, between March 2020 and October 2022 the number of Kenyans actively using mobile money increased by over 6.2 million.

CBK noted that in the same period the monthly volume and value of peer-to-peer transactions surged from 162 million transactions worth Sh234 billion to 440 million transactions worth Sh399 billion, representing 171 percent and 71 percent increases respectively.

Banks and other payment service providers are now required to announce the revised transaction charges before January 1 next year.

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