Transforming Tanzania into an inclusive cash-lite economy requires strategic stakeholders’ partnerships, top-notch innovations and investment in appropriate new technologies, NMB Bank and Selcom Tanzania said yesterday in Dar es Salaam.

The two organisations confessed these conditions for a robust and modern payments industry at the lender’s head office where they announced joining forces to promote a digitally empowered Tanzania.

Emphasizing that the partnership was a monumental development, NMB’s Head of Card Business, Mr Philbert Casmir, said the bank has already done a lot in furthering digital payments as the country forges ahead in its endeavour to become a less-cash society.

Mr. Casmir said the strategic partnership provides their customers and mobile phones owners a wider acceptance opportunity for seamless payments.

“We are pleased to collaborate with Selcom to further enhance interoperability in Tanzania. With this collaboration, we are creating a wider acceptance opportunity for our customers and users of mobile payment services,” he noted.

The contactless arrangement, he explained, allows NMB consumers to pay for goods and services through Selcom merchant points and vice versa while enabling mobile phone subscribers’ to freely access the QR platforms of the two organisations that are widespread across the country.

Currently NMB has of over 53,000 QR touch points while Selcom also has a similar number of merchant points. Official figures put registered mobile phone subscriptions by mid-2021 at 53.1 million of which 33.3 million were registered for mobile payments.

“This is a significant milestone in Tanzania, and we are confident that it will provide all types of customers with enormous value since they will have wider acceptance to pay for goods and services electronically within Tanzania,” Mr Casmir pointed out.

“Strategic partnerships and innovation are central to achieving the vision of cashless society in Tanzania, and we remain committed to developing market-relevant payment solutions that offer true value to consumers,” he added.

The card business expert said electronic payments are simple, faster and secure means of making transactions, whose value for money is boosted by new technologies like secure and instant QR code-based mobile payment solutions.

“The NMB QR and Selcom integration initiative reaffirms our commitment to deepening the local cash-lite economy, and underpins our goal of driving digital and financial inclusion,” Mr Casmir emphasized.

On his part, Selcom Tanzania’s Product Lifecycle Coordinator, Mr Gallus Runyeta, said the partnership forged with NMB catalyses national efforts to advance digital payments and create an interoperability environment to broaden their scope. Of utmost importance, he explained, the collaboration offers a broader range of opportunities that add more value to customers’ payments experience.

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