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Mobile money industry processes record $1.0t globally in 2021

Mobile money industry processes record $1.0t globally in 2021

Mobile money adoption and use saw continued growth in 2021, processing a record $1.0 trillion, according to a report. says a report.

As per the report titled ‘State of the Industry Report on Mobile Money’, the industry enjoyed substantial growth in the number of registered accounts, an increase of 18 per cent since reaching 1.35 billion globally in 2020.

The report, published by the GSMA recently, states volume of person-to-person transactions was up to more than 1.5 million every hour.

GSMA is an international organisation working for the development of mobile money industry.

One of the most significant drivers of growth was merchant payments, which almost doubled year on year, reveals the report.

It also highlights how mobile money continues to act as a core pillar of financial and economic inclusion, particularly for women.

“Mobile money diversified its value proposition beyond person-to-person transfers and cash-in/cash-out transactions in 2021”, says a GSMA release.

It is now playing an important role in the daily lives of people and businesses, especially in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Merchant payments were instrumental in the growth of the mobile money industry in 2021.

The value of merchant payments almost doubled, reaching an average of $5.5 billion in transactions per month.

The report said Mobile money has also been a driving force for financial inclusion for the world’s most vulnerable, particularly women.

Mobile money is empowering women to take more control over their finances and purchase goods that they urgently need.

Owning a mobile phone is an obvious prerequisite to using mobile money, and women across LMIC’s are 7.0 per cent less likely than men to own a mobile phone.

“Overall, 143 million fewer women own a mobile than men. Additional barriers to mobile money access include a lack of awareness of mobile money and a deficit in perceived relevance, knowledge and skills.”

As highlighted in the report, the number of people needing humanitarian assistance in 2022 is predicted to soar to 274 million.

Mobile money is expected to play an increasingly important role in both donations – where it makes delivery systems more efficient and transparent for humanitarian actors and donors – and the receipt of aid.

The UN Refugee Agency sent $700 million in cash and value assistance (CVA) to 8.5 million recipients in 100 countries in 2020.

They have set up digital payment programmes in 47 countries,15 of which use mobile money.

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