As part of efforts to provide customers with convenient and accessible technology-based financial services, MoneyGram has partnered Ghana’s Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) and the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPPS) to offer customers account deposit services for easier remittances.
The cash to account direct product would make customers enjoy direct money transfer services from abroad directly into their bank accounts in Ghana.
The service is also meant to give Ghanaians abroad the opportunity to send money directly to individual bank accounts in Ghana, thus helping to deepen the financial inclusion agenda of government.
Customers are allowed to receive a maximum amount of $8,000 per person per month.
With the costly nature of remittance fees in Africa, stakeholders say the introduction of the new product is a sure way to drive down the cost incurred when people remit monies.
Speaking to Business Insider, John Mensah, managing director of ADB, stated that the initiative will help grow the financial space.
“The way government has been trumpeting the idea of digital revolution, especially as trumpeted by our vice-president, a lot of issues have risen when it comes to remittances in terms of fraud, in terms of money laundering and the mess that you’ll see when you go to our outlets, you see a lot of people coming in to cash money.
“So, it was only a matter of time. This collaboration is a long-thought out idea to move with the times. Now we have a situation where you don’t need to come and cash money because it’s in your account. From your account, you can also transfer it to any wallet.
“When you come to ADB and see the service, it can be linked, once the money enters your account, it can be linked to any account product [for your convenience]”, he said.
Patrick Appiah, regional head, Anglophone West Africa, for MoneyGram, stated that the new system would protect funds of customers.
“In terms of protection, there are lots of regulations that ensure that monies are safe and MoneyGram itself has a robust system which we have been using for decades now, so, when it comes to security, it’s not new to us, it is something we do on a daily basis and this one will not be an exception. Customers’ funds are even more secure with this product that we have launched,” Appiah noted.
The cash-to-account direct product is expected to be replicated by other banks in the country.
According to the World Bank, in 2017, $2.2 billion flowed into Ghana, up 4.3 percent compared to the 2016 figure, which makes the country the fifth largest remittances recipient in Africa.
The inflows come mainly from the United States ($585 million), Nigeria ($395 million), the United Kingdom ($286 million) and Italy ($145 million and Germany ($115 million).