Mobile banking transactions up 28% in January year-over-year

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According to central bank data, a total of 13 banks are currently involved in mobile banking

TBS report

March 20, 2022, 10:20 p.m.

Last modification: March 21, 2022, 10:00 a.m.

Infographic: TBS

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Infographic: TBS

With the addition of new services, the mobile financial services (MFS) industry has recently witnessed a major transformation in the form of a 28% increase in transactions year-on-year, according to Bangladesh Bank data.

Data shows that customers transacted about Tk 57,289 crore through mobile banking in January 2021. The amount stood at Tk 73,393 crore in January this year.

Additionally, the transaction amount increased by Tk 2,210 crore in January 2022 compared to December 2021.

Mobile banking in the country has undergone a sea change due to the convenience of transferring money from town to village and vice versa, people involved in the sector have said.

As a result, the number of transactions increases with the number of customers. Additionally, people have become more comfortable with mobile banking than face-to-face and cash-based transactions since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

In addition, workers’ salary, bonuses, various social security allowances and government grants are now sent through mobile banking.

According to central bank data, a total of 13 banks are currently involved in mobile banking. The number of registered customers stood at 11, 40, 51,000 at the end of January 2022.

Of the total number of registered customers, 6,28,81,000 are male and 5,08,49,000 are female. Meanwhile, the number of agents stood at 11.35,000, according to central bank data.

Apart from transactions, various new services are added to the mobile banking system. Services include payment of electricity, gas, water and other purchases bills, payment of salaries and allowances, remittances.

In January 2021, Tk 22,408 crore was deposited (Cash In) into various mobile bank accounts, while Tk 19,730 crore was cashed out (Cash Out) from the accounts.

Bangladesh Bank data showed that in January 2022, Tk 20,815 crore was transferred from individual accounts to individual accounts in MFS. In addition, Tk 2,663 crore in salaries and allowances from various organizations were disbursed and Tk 1,157 crore was paid in bills from various services.

“The number of MFS transactions has increased alongside the country’s overall financial activities since we started recovering from the setbacks of the pandemic,” said Shamsuddin Dalim, public relations manager at bKash – a popular mobile banking provider in the country.

Additionally, the addiction to MFS transactions created among people during the pandemic has prompted companies like bKash to add new services on a regular basis. With this, the reach of mobile financial services has increased, as has the number of users, he said.

In addition, the government also uses mobile financial services to disburse various types of allowances. As a result, there is a steady growth in transactions in this sector, the bKash official added.

Bangladesh Bank launched a mobile banking program in 2010. However, the country’s first private sector mobile financial service started on March 31, 2011 with the launch of Dutch-Bangla Bank’s Rocket service.

Shortly after Rocket, BRAC Bank launched its bKash mobile banking service as a subsidiary. Currently, bKash holds the majority of the mobile banking market.

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