DAR ES SALAAM –  A senior official at the Tanzania’s central bank, the Bank of Tanzania (BOT) has called for expansion of mobile financial services with a focus on delivery of credit, basic savings and insurance services, local media reported on Thursday.

Natu Mwamba, BOT deputy governor for economic and financial policies, was quoted by the Citizen saying that mobile banking services are potential for transforming financial access in both urban and rural areas. She told participants at the African Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (Afraca) workshop here that mobile banking should help to extend services in rural areas as most financial institutions especially commercial banks are concentrated in urban centers.

“More than 2.5 billion adults in the developing countries lack access to financial services while nearly 2.5 billion have mobile phones,” she said quoting a Boston Consulting Group Study on mobile financial services. According to her, the number of registered customers for mobile financial services reached 2.1 million at the end of 2011 while the volume of transactions was 157 million with a value of 4 billion U.S. dollars.

Despite the increase of the mobile phone money services in the country, they are operating without proper legal checking. The central bank has just drafted the mobile financial service regulations, which are at an advanced stage to be discussed by stakeholders. (Xinhua)

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