MMU is releasing a policy paper that builds on evidence and lessons learnt globally around the regulatory reforms that enable mobile money to grow. Our aim is to provide a useful tool for regulators and mobile money providers to engage more effectively to create enabling environments for digital financial inclusion.
This paper describes how mobile money is most likely to succeed where there is an open and level playing field that allows non-bank mobile money providers, including mobile network operators (MNOs), to offer financial services. In addition, the paper describes how mobile money services can adequately provide consumer protection, how the challenges of anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) compliance can be addressed by promoting risk-based know-your-customer (KYC) procedures, and how cost-effective regulatory solutions can be implemented to develop and set up distribution networks and accelerate customer adoption.
As awareness grows that financial exclusion is a source of risk for the financial system and that financial inclusion reinforces the objectives of financial stability, integrity, and consumer protection, mobile money is increasingly recognised as a means of driving economic and social growth through a cash-lite economy. As such, these regulatory reforms should not simply be items on the regulator’s financial inclusion agenda; they should become central to national strategies for improving financial stability and integrity, protecting financial consumers, fostering economic growth and job creation, and guarding the financial system against the risks of the widespread use of cash. The countries that have embraced the reforms discussed in this paper are ultimately driving innovation in mobile financial services and are building inclusive, secure, and efficient financial sectors.