The GSMA has issued a new report asserting that the costs of sending remittances through mobile devices are considerably lower than they are via money transfer operators, or MTOs.
Entitled “Driving a Price Revolution: Mobile Money in International Remittances”, the report says that mobile remittances are half as expensive as those sent through MTOs. That’s partly thanks to low transaction fee rates, with the average cost of sending $200 in remittances from a mobile money account being 2.7 percent, compared to six percent when sent through the average MTO.
The trends suggest that mobile solutions could be having a significant humanitarian impact. In a statement outlining the report’s findings, the GSMA points out that the reduction of migrants’ remittances costs is an objective of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and that the World Bank estimates that over 250 million migrants regularly send money back to their home countries. As GSMA Chief Regulatory Officer John Giusti explains, “the industry is directly supporting the goal of expanded financial inclusion for migrants and their families by reducing international remittance costs”.
The trend tracks with a number of other findings detailing the increasing importance of mobile technology to a range of activities in everyday life outlined in the GSMA’s recent Global Mobile Trends report.