Regulatory possibilities for East African mobile money

Mobile money – the use of cell phones for money transfers, payments and more sophisticated financial activities such as credit, savings, and insurance – is increasingly popular in East Africa but could benefit from region-wide rules to coordinate and harmonise regulations, an UNCTAD study says; the report, Mobile Money for Business Development in the East African Community: A Comparative Study of Existing Platforms and Regulations, focuses on the East African Community (EAC) as a way of addressing wider issues raised by mobile money – with than half a billion dollars transferred in the region using cell phones each month, the practice is burgeoning where traditional banks and banking activities are in short supply, where people lack access to the financial services that are taken for granted in industrialised countries.

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