HARARE – The value of transactions processed through the National Payments System (NPS) declined by 37 percent, to close the week ending December 29, 2017 at $1, 675 billion according to the latest Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Weekly Economic Highlights.
RBZ said the decline was mainly driven by a 46 percent decrease in the value of Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) transactions, to $957,7 million from
$1,786 billion during the week ending December 22.
This decline was on the back of a cash crisis which worsened during the festive season, with banks limiting depositors’ withdrawals. The cash problems also affected spending and the value of NPS transactions as most depositors were failing to access cash.
“The distribution of NPS transactions in value terms was as follows: RTGS 57,15 percent; Mobile 24,02 percent; Point of Sale (POS) 18,58 percent; Automated Teller Machine (ATM) 0,21 percent and cheque 0,03 percent.
The total volume of NPS transactions decreased by 4 percent to 33 837 476 during the week under review, from 35 305 747 recorded in the previous week,” said RBZ.
RBZ said the proportions of NPS transactions in volume terms were Mobile, 70,18 percent; POS 29,30 percent; ATM 0,25 percent; RTGS 0,25 percent and cheque, 0,01 percent.
Most service providers in both the public and private sector have adopted mobile money as a means for processing payments placing the channel as the most common alternative for the country’s unbanked population and the nation’s significant informal sector.
An acute shortage of bank notes in Zimbabwe has forced Zimbabweans to resort to electronic means of payment with NPS transactions reaching $2 billion in October last year.