Central Bank Rolls Out $150m License Fee for Mobile Money Operators

Feb 25 , 2023

International mobile money operators will be required to pay a staggering 150 million dollar license fee as the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) put forth a draft proposal signed by the director of the Payment and Settlement System. According to the draft, the fee is an investment protection cost for foreign nationals investing in businesses that are open only to local investors or the government. The status of Safaricom's application to introduce mobile money services is now open for discussion. The Kenyan telecommunications service provider Safaricom has expressed its interest in expanding the use of its mobile money service, M-Pesa, in Ethiopia. Unfortunately, it was prohibited from providing money-remittance services due to legal restrictions. Allowing for bigger electronic account balances and higher transaction limits, the new regulation raises the amount that can be stored in digital wallets. A maximum daily electronic account balance of 10,000 Br and a daily transaction cap of 20,000 Br apply to level one accounts, while a 300,000 Br cap and a maximum electronic balance of 100,000 Br is allowed for level two accounts.


E-Consultation Portal Launched to Boost Stakeholder Engagement

An e-consultation manual and portal designed to enhance stakeholder engagement in the drafting of laws before their final ratification stage was launched last week. Developed by the Business Environment & Investment Climate (BEIC) project team, the platform operates under the oversight of the Justice and Technology ministries. It aims to improve transparency, efficiency, awareness, and effectiveness throughout the law formulation and enactment process. According to Belayhun Yirga, stat...


Trade Ministry Changes Guard

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) made a series of appointments last week, assigning Kassahun Goffe (PhD) as the new Minister of Trade & Regional Integration. Kassahun, who previously served as the State Minister, succeeds Gebremeskel Chala, who navigated the country through various trade reforms. The appointment comes amidst an export slump, as Ethiopia has faced major economic and political headwinds over the past few years. The Ministry reported a shortfall of 863 million dollars from it...


Ahadu Bank Savours First Taste of Profits

Ahadu Bank registered a 175 million Br gross profits in the ended year, turning around its financial performance. The two-year-old Bank established with 503 million Br in paid-up capital mobilised from 9,600 shareholders has also managed to double the figure to 1.03 billion Br. Ahadu's total assets have also nearly doubled to 6.3 billion Br, while its operating income soared to 1.15 billion Br from financial services for nearly 700,000 customers. It also expanded its branch reach across the c...