Amazing solution offers financial inclusion for Zimbabweans in SA

September 7, 2018 10:39 am13 comments
Herbert Banhire -Head Zimbabwean Diaspora -Zing Group

Herbert Banhire -Head Zimbabwean Diaspora -Zing Group

by MTHULISI SIBANDA
JOHANNESBURG – MILLIONS of disenfranchised Zimbabweans living in neighbouring South Africa can now access free mobile transacting and basic insurance services.

Both banked and unbanked Zimbabweans will benefit following the launch of the AMA.ZING Diaspora solution in South Africa.

The mobile solution, developed by the Zing Group, enables people in the neighbouring country to buy products and pay bills in Zimbabwe using digital coins paid for in the local Rand currency.

It is arguably the first time that people living in South Africa can buy insurance in Zimbabwe from across the border – a unique value proposition, made stronger by insurance company Swiss Re’s support.

“We view this product as a game-changer that will not only help realise financial inclusion for emerging markets, but also disrupt the current status quo in the financial services and money remittance sector,” said Hebert Banhire, AMA.ZING Head of Zimbabwean Diaspora South Africa.

He disclosed that in the formal sector alone, Zimbabweans remitted $785 million from South Africa between January and November 2017.

The average monetary value of these transfers was around R1 200.

Banhire noted while there are many money transfer businesses available, the cost of using these services in South Africa was expensive, with official average fees reported at 16,71 percent.

“The reality on the ground, however, is closer to between 20 percent and 40 percent of the total transfer of money being remitted across the border,” Banhire said.

“When looking at the sheer volume of money Zimbabweans spending on sending money across the border and the extent to which they are being exploited, it became clear that we needed to find a solution.”

Of convenience is that users only need to supply their name and mobile number in order to register on the app and do not need a bank account.

“This is critical for the 3.5 million Zimbabweans living in South Africa – of which just 25 percent are banked formally,” said Banhire.

Zing Coins can be purchased in app using a bank card,  Snapscan app or Zapper app, or in cash from one of more than 100 000 till points around South Africa, found across a wide range of stores, with PEP and Pick n’ Pay already available.

More stores will be available soon.

Pay@, which covers over 100 000 retail locations, will be the primary payment provider for AMA.ZING.

Hennie Blignaut, Senior Sales Consultant from Pay@, said AMA.ZING members will have the ease and convenience of multiple retailers and user-friendly mobile applications to fund their AMA.ZING account.

“Pay@ is excited to be part of this innovative initiative and looks forward to expanding our payment options across the rest of Africa,” Blignaut said.

AMA.ZING – part of the Zing Group – owns and operates micro-insurance and mobile money licenses in Zimbabwe and Malawi as well as cross-border Diaspora solutions in South Africa.

“We are incredibly excited about the massive impact this product will have on the day-to-day lives of both those Zimbabweans living in South Africa,as well as those back in Zimbabwe who are so reliant on monetary support from their relatives in South Africa,” Banhire concluded.
– CAJ News

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