Freetown, SIERRA LEONE – According to data from the Central Bank, Mobile Money Agents concluded 2022 with an outstanding balance of NLe198.5 million. The recently published Financial Stability Report 2022, released in November 2023, revealed that escrow account balances reached NLe402.2 million in the same year, while the total amount of E-Money in circulation stood at NLe364.7 million.
The report’s analysis of Mobile Money Operators (MNOs) activity indicated significant expansion throughout 2022. The number of agents, accounts, and transactions, as well as the value of transactions, all experienced growth over the course of the year. The Central Bank noted that the size of the MNOs’ balance sheet now surpasses that of Community Banks (CBs) and approaches that of Credit Only Microfinance Institutions (COMFIs).
However, the report also highlighted a considerable decline in the number of active accounts, essentially halving. This decrease, the report clarified, is primarily a technical adjustment resulting from a clean-up of customer account data. One institution mentioned in the report migrated customers to a new system, and during this process, accounts that were not fully registered or had a zero balance for at least six months were automatically deleted. ZIJ/11/12/2023