Kenyans can now make cross-border remittances following the launch of person-to-person money transfers and persons-to-businesses payments through the VISA network, and Absa Bank Kenya.
The development was revealed this week, and it’s a unique product because VISA and Absa had not had such a product before.
Ideally, Absa debit and credit cardholders will now be able to move money from the VISA card accounts to any VISA debit card, be it local or abroad.
The same transfer can also be made via the Hello Money USSD and Absa mobile smartphone app, but for prepaid cards.
Absa customers will only need to enter the beneficiary’s VISA card details or linked mobile numbers to complete funds transfer.
With the Absa-Visa Send Money service, customers can transact at scale, with a maximum transaction value of KES 1 million, for both domestic and international transactions.
Absa says that the transactions take only a couple of steps.
Customers do not need to go to an Absa branch to fill out or re-enter pre-registered information.
Absa customers will also be able to send out money to their families and friends, as well as shopping or trade partners within and out of Kenya.
Remittances to low and middle-income countries like Kenya are expected to rise by 2.2 percent to KES 66.1 trillion in 2022 as part of the post-pandemic recovery, according to the World Bank.
According to a Central Bank of Kenya report, Kenya is currently ranked third among Sub-Saharan Africa’s largest recipients, but it is behind Nigeria and Ghana, with a total of KES 421.6 billion remitted by Kenyans living abroad in 2021.
VISA has since partnered with Safaricom to launch a virtual card for international payments.
A few weeks ago, the payments corporation also introduced an innovation hub in Sub-Saharan Africa based in Nairobi.
“We are excited to have partnered with Visa as we avail this innovative customer proposition, the latest addition to our growing portfolio of services and solutions launched to deliver faster, more secure, and convenient remittance processes for Absa customers. The new remittance service is designed to simplify Absa customers’ remittance experience allowing them to enjoy near real-time fund transfers to friends and families overseas,” said Absa Bank’s Managing Director Jeremy Awori.
“With the rise of digital payments, this partnership strives to bring digital-first solutions and we will continue to provide services that meet our consumers’ increasing expectations for seamless and secure ways to move money globally.”