ATMs not only for cash withdrawals—report


More people are still not aware that they can use automated teller machines (ATMs) for other transactions apart from cash withdrawals.

RBM figures contained in the latest Monthly Payment System Report show that out of 1.7 million transactions processed through ATMs in February, cash deposits, funds transfers, bill payments and airtime top-ups accounted for only 3 995 transactions, representing 0.235 percent.

Most people use ATMs for cash withdrawals only

This is equivalent to transaction totalling K202.2 million out of the K44 billion processed during the month.

“There is, therefore, need for more awareness efforts to ensure more people utilise ATMs for other transactions and reduce cash withdrawals,” reads the report in part.

RBM has not provided reasons for this low usage, but Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) executive director John Kapito earlier said this could be a result of charges levied on ATM usage and poor network.

“There seems to be hidden charges in the usage of ATMs for other services. Malawians are already cash-strapped and they do not want to lose more of their hard-earned cash. Apart from that, most ATMs are without network most of the times,” he said yesterday.

Kapito agreed with RBM on the need for more awareness, but said the central bank and commercial banks have to champion the campaign.

The report, which has analysed the usage of all modes of digital financial services (DFSs) ranging from Point of Sale (PoS) devices, Internet banking, ATMs to bank-led mobile payments, indicates that the daily average volume of overall retail DFS transactions declined by 2.5 percent to 432 191 in  February 2018.

But it said the corresponding daily average value of DFS transactions increased by 11.1 percent to K4.9 billion in the period under review.

“Point of Sale [PoS] and mobile money transactions contributed to this decline as they decreased by 7.6 percent and 4.3 percent, respectively, during the period.

During the period, RBM was delighted with the marginal reduction in cheque transactions as both the volume and value declined by 0.8 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively.

RBM welcomes this development as it shows a steady customer migration and needs to be sustained to ensure alternative electronic methods of payments which are safer and efficient. n

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