Mojaloop Foundation’s Walk the Loop Event in Tanzania Shows Path to Financial Inclusion – Desire Kachenje

In Swahili, “Mojaloop” means “one loop.” The Mojaloop Foundation strives to create one financial services loop for everyone. The Mojaloop Foundation’s open source software, Mojaloop, was designed to provide a reference model for inclusive instant payment interoperability to overcome barriers that have slowed the spread of digital financial services. Using Mojaloop, central banks, hub operators, other financial institutions and system integrators can collaborate to design instant payments systems that bring inclusive financial services to the entire population – especially the underserved.

The Mojaloop Foundation PI20 Community Meeting Hosts Walk the Loop Event

The Mojaloop Foundation PI20 Community Meeting took place at the end of October in Tanzania, where the central bank, the Bank of Tanzania, is using Mojaloop as part of its implementation of an interoperable digital payment system called the Tanzania Instant Payments System (TIPS). TIPS allows for the transfer of payments between different financial services providers and will handle real-time payments exchanged among participating digital financial service providers including banks and non-banks to help increase financial inclusion by improving access and usage of financial services in Tanzania.

Currently, TIPS is being tested by a closed user group that includes three banks and two mobile operators. Airtel Tanzania, the third-largest telecommunications company in Tanzania, and CRDB, the largest bank in Tanzania, are among the participants of this closed user group and served as the hosts of the Mojaloop “Walk the Loop” event.

“Walk the Loop was a great opportunity for our community members to see our mission in action,” said Mojaloop Foundation Executive Director, Paula Hunter. “During the walk, participants were assigned to breakout groups, and each group was provided with a list of transactions to perform at different stores, enabling them to experience a Mojaloop-enabled instant payment system using real money with participating merchants in Zanzibar.”

During the event, the Mojaloop community walked to different participating merchants to experience different financial services in Tanzania. “Walk the Loop” participants were able to:

  • Use financial services at different participating merchants and agents;
  • Make a TIPS transaction and a non-TIPS transaction to experience the differing time and cost benefits;
  • Engage with real money and participate in the real customer experience by making an instant payments transaction at a local merchant or agent.

“It was interesting to see the other Mojaloop community members experience how the locals here navigate through the different financial services that are available in Tanzania,” said Tatu Mikidadi from the Ministry of Finance and Planning, Tanzania.

The loop route included stops in Stone Town, Zanzibar City’s “old town,” specifically Darajani, Forodhani, and Mlandege. Participants experienced the following scenarios:

Figure 1: Walk the Loop Community Payments Scenarios

“Walk the Loop was a great opportunity to understand current financial service products and services available in Tanzania, experience several benefits that TIPS has brought, and mingle with other members of the Mojaloop community,” said Kyeyoung Shin, Mojaloop Foundation community member, of Oxford University, United Kingdom.

Figure 2: Participants Visited Different Merchants and Agents to Experience What It Is Like to Perform Instant Payments Transactions With Real Money in Zanzibar.

“Walk the Loop was an awesome experience. I got to witness firsthand a use case of Mojaloop, especially the impact it had on a micro-SME in Tanzania,” said Mark Ihimoyan, Mojaloop Foundation community member, Regional Director of Emerging Markets Engineering at Microsoft (Middle East and Africa), UAE. “It’s truly heartwarming to see the vision of the Mojaloop project come to life on the streets of Tanzania.”

To learn more and get involved in the Mojaloop Foundation, please visit here.

 

About the Mojaloop Foundation

The Mojaloop Foundation’s mission is to increase financial inclusion by empowering organizations that are creating interoperable payment systems to enable digital financial services for all. Sponsor-level members include Coil, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Google, MAS, ModusBox, Ripple and The Rockefeller Foundation. To achieve its mission, Mojaloop Foundation operates as a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit organization, maintaining its free, open source software, Mojaloop, and community as public goods in the service of financial inclusion. Merchants, banks, providers, government offices and other entities looking to build inclusive payments platforms can use Mojaloop – whole, adapted, or as a real-time payments reference model. For more information about the Mojaloop Foundation, visit https://mojaloop.io/.

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