|Ethiopia||Orange, MTN, Safaricom among 12 operators vying for Ethiopian mobile licence. Ethiopia Communications Authority (ECA) confirmed 12 applications at the initial stage prospective bidders for a mobile license. The operators are competing for one of two telecommunications licences being offered by the ECA, who intends to open up the country’s mobile market. The only player in this space is currently state-owned Ethio Telecom. Mobile World Live|
|Africa||MFS Africa acquires East African payments management startup, Beyonic. The Johannesburg-based payments company, MFS Africa, says the acquisition will allow entrepreneurs of MFS Africa Hub to access the digital payment network that Beyonic provides. Techpoint Africa|
|Kenya||Safaricom to lose more money as Central Bank of Kenya extends period for free mobile money transfers. The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has said that the free mobile money transfers announced on March 16th, 2020 will remain in place till December 2020. Safaricom's M-Pesa who owns majority of the mobile money cash transfer market has lost an average of Sh1.8 billion (~$16m) monthly since mid-March. However this is not a source of concern for the company with CEO, Peter Ndegwa, saying they are in a good place to weather the storm. Business Daily|
|Nigeria||Nigeria's president sees threat to West African currency plan. Muhammadu Buhari, the Nigerian president said that West Africa's plan to adopt a common currency was being put at risk by some countries' attempts to progress more quickly than the agreed timetable. This was said in reference to francophone countries deciding to replace their currencies with the Eco, ahead of others countries in the region. Reuters|
|Zimbabwe||Zimbabwe Government suspends use of mobile money platforms. The government said the suspension was necessary, accusing mobile money platforms of generating phantom exchange rates that sabotage the economy. However, Ecocash, the country’s dominant mobile money group, is choosing to follow the guidelines set by The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe instead. While mobile money agents would not be allowed to process mobile financial transactions, The Reserve Bank says merchants can receive payments for goods, services, and utilities, with a daily limit of ZWD5,000 ($13.82) being enforced on all accounts. Financial Times|
|Nigeria||Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) issues draft framework for regulatory sandbox operations. The Central Bank says that the regulatory sandbox will serve as a formal process for firms to conduct live tests of new, innovative products and services, with regulatory oversight. The Sandbox application process is open to both existing CBN licensees and other local companies. Business Day Nigeria|
|Global||PayPal, Venmo to roll out buying and selling of cryptocurrency. PayPal is reportedly looking to offer the buying and selling of crypto directly on their platform within the next three months. Currently, PayPal can be used as an alternative means of withdrawing funds from exchanges such as Coinbase, but this would be a first in terms of offering direct sales of crypto. CoinDesk|
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