CONTAINING COVID-19

CBK sets emergency measures to facilitate mobile money transactions

Measures will apply from midnight March 16 to June 30, 2020.

In Summary

•This follows President Uhuru Kenyatta’s appeal to Kenyans to use mobile money and card payments instead of hard currency to guard against the spread of coronavirus.

• The transaction limit for mobile money increased to Sh150,000 and the daily limit for mobile money transactions increased to Sh300,000.

The Central Bank of Kenya governor Patrick Njoroge during a past press briefing.
The Central Bank of Kenya governor Patrick Njoroge during a past press briefing.
Image: FILE

The Central Bank of Kenya has announced a raft of measures to facilitate increased use of mobile money transactions instead of cash.

This follows President Uhuru Kenyatta’s appeal to Kenyans on Sunday to use mobile money and card payments instead of hard currency to guard against the spread of coronavirus.

To facilitate this, the apex bank said there will be no charge for mobile money transactions up to Sh1,000.

The transaction limit for mobile money was also increased to Sh150,000 and the daily limit for mobile money transactions increased to Sh300,000.

The mobile money wallet limit has been increased to Sh300,000 while the monthly total limit for mobile money transactions is eliminated.

The current tariff for mobile money transactions for Sh70,000 will apply for transactions up to Sh150,000.

Payment service providers and commercial banks have also been asked to eliminate charges for transfers between mobile money wallets and bank accounts.

“While the immediate objective is to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 by handling banknotes, these measures will also reduce the use of cash in the economy over the medium term,” CBK said.

 

The emergency measures will apply from midnight March 16, 2020, and will remain in place until June 30, 2020.

Uhuru also appealed to mobile money providers to cut on transaction costs to make the cashless shift affordable.

 

Safaricom is the first mobile money provider to comply with the set measures.

The current frameworks on anti-money laundering and countering financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) will continue to apply and CBK will closely monitor the implementation of these emergency measures.