ECONET Wireless Zimbabwe has partnered with WorldRemit to provide a new international remittance services to its mobile money transfer service, EcoCash.
The development means that EcoCash subscribers can receive money on their wallets from all over the world.
Speaking at the launch of a new remittances service yesterday, Econet Services chief executive officer Darlington Mandivenga said the transfers would be made using credit or debit cards through the WorldRemit website.
“The launch of this partnership could not have come at a better time, when the government of Zimbabwe has been actively raising awareness on the importance of the Zimbabweans in Diaspora in furthering the economic development and stability of the nation,” Mandivenga said.
He said Zimbabweans in the Diaspora should fully utilise the WorldRemit-EcoCash remittance service because of its increased convenience, flexibility, speed and security.
According to the World Bank, $519 billion of remittance payments were made in 2012, of which $1,8 billion was estimated to have been sent to Zimbabwe.
Mandivenga said they were projecting to get at least a third ($600 million) of the remittances.
WorldRemit launched its online money transfer service to Zimbabwe in December 2010, which quickly became one of its largest African corridors.
WorldRemit North America director Rob Ayers said the company was inspired by some inconsistences in the services which were being brought to the market and the desire to improve the inconveniences to send money, the speed and the cost of the transaction.
“We see a rapid growth in the remittance services. Western
Union relies on agents and when you rely on agents you entrust them with a lot of cash.
“WorldRemit is not new to Africa and it is safe, more reliable and more convenient,” Ayers said.
He, however, said WorldRemit will charge around 5% for transfers while EcoCash will not charge the recipient any additional fees for the transaction.
Ayers said WorldRemit already has a similar partnership with mobile operators in Kenya and other parts of Africa.