East Africa will by the end of 2015, be able to transfer money via mobile phones across borders if full implementation of the One Area Network Agreement (OANA) succeeds.
The One Area Network Agreement is a commitment by regional countries to push for a reduction on international and roaming tariffs to ensure affordable communication services for ease of doing business.
Communications and Technology Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i stated that: “ICT Ministers from the region are now seeking approval from all respective central banks and treasury Ministries to go on with the project.”
“We are now exploring how we can have the One Area Network infrastructure grow from voice to data and mobile money transfer. We want you to be able to move money from your MPESA account here to a relative in Kigali and vice versa or from Airtel Uganda to Safaricom in Nairobi,” Matiang’i said.
According to Matiang’i, the ministries will on their part focus on working on data reforms to reduce its cost in the region using the relevant authorities under them.
The project is currently being implemented in three EAC countries – Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda – as well as South Sudan which is yet to formally join the community.