GHANA:Interest Payment on Mobile Cash Deposits deferred to December

Mobile Cash account holders would for now receive interest payments on their deposits until December. This is because the Bank of Ghana is yet to complete the process for the payment by mobile service operators.

This came to light at this year’s MTN Mobile Money Month. The interest, ranging between 1.5 and 7 percent is to be computed daily but would be aggregated and paid to subscribers every three months.

The payment is to take retrospective effect from January 2016. Speaking with Joy Business, MTN’s General Manager in charge of Mobile Financial Service, Eli Hini said they are set to effect payments to subscribers.

"We have been ready at the time the Central Bank mandated us, indeed we have done all our submission and we are only waiting for the green light. Once that is granted we provide to pay," he said. 

According to him, the interest has already been paid and calculated on the daily balances of customers which are aggregated for a month and compounded over a quarter.

"So customers are going to be paid quarterly interest. We are ready to do the disbursement once we get the green light from the Bank of Ghana (BoG)," he disclosed.

As to whether the amount will be anything significant Mr Hini said it would depend on the period the customer held the funding adding "like regular banking you need to keep funds over a long term before you get significant interest."  

He said BoG has provided the interest range between 1.5 -7 percent per annum to the banks and the banks have the liberty to advice that or what they want to pay. 

Group Head of Personal Banking at Access Bank Stephen Abban added that the banks are also ready to make the payments once the Central Bank gives the all-clear.

"We are ready. As banks, we are working int he interest of the customers and our regulators are Bank of Ghana (BoG) and we are working with the telco partners," he said. 

He said they are still engaging and the frameworks are all in place to ensure that customers are paid. 

"Customers deserve their interest and we will pay them. We are also customers too and its is good for everybody. If the only way to encourage a lot more people to join the cashless drive, I am all for it," Mr Abban said.  

The total value of Mobile cash transactions according to the Bank of Ghana increased to about Gh¢600 million in the second quarter of this year.