The launch of the event in MalawiÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s capital, Lilongwe, was also attended by ministers of Finance and Development Planning Dr Ken Lipenga, Information and Civic Education, Patricia Kaliati and Industry and Trade John Bande.
Lipenga hailed the launch, saying it came at the right time when government policy is moving towards having all Malawians access financial services atÃ‚Â an affordable cost.
He said the technology will reduce risks involved in using hard cash.
Airtel Money, according to the company’s managing director Saulos Chilima, will help customers open bank accounts, check balances, pay utility bills, transfer funds and even rechargeÃ‚Â without hassles.
“On a continent where availability of financial services is limited to certain geographical areas and income ranges, the majority mainly in rural areas, uses unreliable and costly informal channels…. which will be addressed by this facility,” said Chilima.
He said the mobile money transfer system, which is already present in EastÃ‚Â and West Africa, would reach $200 billion by 2015 as many people haveÃ‚Â adopted it.
Bande said the facility will help small-scale traders to eliminate the time and reduce costs of doing business as they can bank and receive payments within the vicinity of their business areas.
Kaliati said the facility would simplify life.
Andrew Santhe, Airtel Money country manager, showed people how the facility works.
He said it is time the country moved on to new technology that helps to improve access to financial services.