Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

FinTech

Moroccans and Egyptians embrace digital payment methods

Article Image
The adoption of digital payment methods is accelerating in the Middle East and Africa (MENA) region with strong growth in "emerging payment methods" reported in Egypt and Morocco.

That's according to Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 which found that 85% of people in MENA have used at least one emerging payment method in the last year.

These new payment methods include tappable smartphone mobile wallets, digital money transfer apps, mobile Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) methods, biometrics and payment-enabled wearable tech devices.

Consumers are also making purchases in increasingly diverse ways, including through voice assistants and social media apps, Mastercard found.

Emerging payment methods growth in MENA
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for MENA)
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for MENA)

Country-specific data from Mastercard shows that the rate is even higher in Egypt where 88% of people surveyed said they used at least one emerging payment method in the last year. That includes 35% who used tappable smartphone mobile wallets, 27% who used a digital money transfer app and 24% who used QR codes.

"Egypt is a fertile ground for all that is innovative and digital. It's wonderful to see consumers in Egypt adopting different payment options such as payment apps and BNPL, and discovering more of the digital economy's benefits," said Adam Jones, country GM for MENA Central at Mastercard.

Meanwhile, 75% of people in Morocco had used at least one emerging payment method in the last year. Almost 25% had used a digital money transfer app, 20% had used a tappable smartphone mobile wallet and 10% had used a BNPL installment plan.

"As Moroccan consumers become more aware of the benefits, speed and convenience of new technologies, we're also seeing wider adoption of new digital payment methods," added Mohamed Benomar, country GM for MENA West at Mastercard.

Cash contraction

While traditional payment methods still have traction, 19% of consumers across MENA said they used less cash in the past year, while 15% of consumers in Egypt and 11% in Morocco said the same.

By contrast, 64% of Egyptian users and 53% of Moroccan consumers (compared to 61% globally) increased their use of at least one digital payment method in the last year, including digital cards, SMS payments, digital money transfer apps and instant payment services.

Mastercard expects these behaviors to continue into 2023, with comfort and security key to growing adoption.

Adoption of biometrics, BNPL, open banking and account-to-account payments are anticipated to continue accelerating in Morocco and Egypt.

Buy now, pay later

An interesting trend was observed in the growth of BNPL options. In Morocco, 74% of people said they had heard of BNPL and 39% are already comfortable using it today. In Egypt, 81% of people were familiar with the concept and 50% were comfortable using it.

Egyptian users' reaction to buy now pay later
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for Egypt)
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for Egypt)

Those that have used BNPL find it useful for planning payments and big-ticket purchases, as well as increased purchasing power. Consumers want the flexibility and convenience of BNPL, but with the sense of security associated with a trusted provider like a bank or payment network and found it useful as a budgeting and financial planning tool.

Consumers in Morocco also recognize the convenience that biometrics can offer, with over half agreeing it is easier to make payments using biometrics than a card or device.

"While consumers do have some concerns about what entities have access to their biometric data, they are still open to using it given the time it saves, and over half (52%) have used biometrics for at least one purchase in the last year," Mastercard said.

About 75% of consumers said they used or plan to use their fingerprint to make a payment, which was followed by other biometric methods like facial recognition, palm or hand, and retina scans.

Biometric payments growth in Morocco
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for Morocco)
(Source: Mastercard's New Payments Index 2022 for Morocco)

The index also found that Gen Z and Millennials in MENA are leveraging more digital payment methods and are more open to buying virtual products in the metaverse.

Related posts:

*Top image source: created by rawpixel.com - www.freepik.com.

— Paula Gilbert, Editor, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub

Story

Google's Equiano subsea cable lands on SA shores

Google’s Equiano subsea cable, which seeks to connect Europe to Africa via the ocean, has made its final stop landing in Melkbosstrand, Western Cape, South Africa.

Story

Women in Tech: Spotlight on legal tech with Life.file's Sinal Govender

Life.file co-founder, Sinal Govender, talks to Connecting Africa as part of our Women's Month series about her career and how we can encourage more young girls to enter the legal tech field.

More Innovation hub

Africa Tech Perspectives

Story

Women in Tech: Spotlight on inclusivity with Digital Council Africa's Juanita Clark

Digital Council Africa founder and CEO, Juanita Clark, talks to Connecting Africa as part of our Women's Month series about her career and what needs to be done to make the tech industry intentionally inclusive.

Story

Women in Tech: Spotlight on legal tech with Life.file's Sinal Govender

Life.file co-founder, Sinal Govender, talks to Connecting Africa as part of our Women's Month series about her career and how we can encourage more young girls to enter the legal tech field.

Story

Digital inclusion as a catalyst for economic empowerment: Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu

Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu talks to Connecting Africa about how digital payment solutions and mobile money are transforming the lives of small business owners, women and marginalized groups in East Africa.

More AfricaCom perspectives

Partner perspectives

5G is lighting up the future of North Africa
By Chris Meng, VP of Huawei Northern Africa Carrier Business Department

The moving target that is telecoms fraud
By Clémentine Fournier, Regional VP Sales, Africa, BICS

How mobile operators in Africa can address signalling threats and secure the network
By Katia Gonzalez, Head of Fraud and Security at BICS

All Partner Perspectives

Latest video

More videos

Guest Perspectives

Story

Omdia View: June 2022

By Omdia Analysts

5G was the major news trend across Africa in June, as Orange became the first operator to launch 5G in Réunion and operators in Senegal accelerated their 5G plans despite spectrum delays.

Story

Omdia View: May 2022

By Omdia Analysts

SpaceX-owned Starlink's plans to launch a satellite broadband service in Africa was a major highlight in May 2022, says Omdia's analysts.

More Guest Perspectives

Upcoming events

Africa Tech Festival
November 7-11, 2022
CTICC, Cape Town
More Upcoming events

Archived webinars

Africa Green ICT: Lighting Up a Sustainable Continent

The ICT industry is the leading industry in the commitment to carbon neutrality, whose focus has shifted from setting ambitious targets to taking initiatives. The push for zero-carbon and for green energy development, it isn't just about CSR – it's also good for sustainable business.

The path to sustainable development requires green energy. Governments are looking at potential policy approaches to make green energy more widely available and affordable. Without sustainable energy, there will be no digital transformation and no chance of making Africa more economically competitive in the post-pandemic era.

Africa Green ICT Webinar 2022 will bring together ICT industry leaders and senior industrial analysts to provide insight, best practices and key learnings on how to achieve zero-carbon targets and practice green development in Africa.

More Webinars

Sponsored video

More videos

Flash poll

All polls

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up


Sign Up