East Africa Bank announced today the introduction of the first co-branded MasterCard payment card in Djibouti, with the roll-out of 5,000 MasterCard debit cards.
The collaboration between MasterCard and East Africa Bank will see a wider range of electronic payment solutions being introduced in the country, and made available for all citizens.
“Only 5% of the population in Djibouti currently has a payment card, and the country is heavily dependent on cash. Salaries are paid directly into a bank account, but as many people don’t have a payment card it is difficult for them to access their funds. The same applies to Somalia where MasterCard now will be available via Dahabshil Bank” said Mr. Hirsi Dirir, Chief Executive Officer of East Africa Bank.
The displacement of cash with the introduction of safer, convenient electronic payment solutions will develop a more financially inclusive country. According to the World Bank, Djibouti has a financial exclusion rate of 87.7 percent, meaning that the majority of the one million citizens are unbanked or underbanked.
Anthony Karingi, regional manager, East Africa, MasterCard said, “Cardholders will have easier access to their funds. They are able to use their payment card at Point of Sale (POS) terminals in Djibouti but also in 210 countries across the world, where MasterCard is accepted, making travelling outside of the country easier, and safer.”
“We are committed to East Africa, and look forward to working alongside East Africa Bank to make Djibouti a more inclusive economy, one that is less dependent on cash,” said Karingi.