Monday, 1 September 2014

Information on Remittances to Somalia

Remittances play an important role in Somalia, supporting livelihoods and economic development.
We know how important it is for you to be able to send remittances to your family and friends in Somalia.
We understand that developments in remittance markets are causing uncertainty and concern.
Government, community representatives and SOMSA have worked together to produce this factsheet.
It aims to provide information on multi-agency efforts to ensure remittances continue to flow through secure, accessible channels to Somalia and information on available options for sending remittances.
We will update the factsheet regularly as new developments happen. But we also want to hear from you through planned community meetings, your community representatives and social media sites.

What are we doing?
The UK Government established the Action Group on Cross Border Remittances to form a public-private partnership to address challenges in remittance markets.
Our aim is both to help banks have greater confidence in transactions and protect you by ensuring that funds are transferred through secure channels and reach the people you intend them for.
The Action Group, chaired by Sir Brian Pomeroy, has met monthly supporting dialogue between banks, remittance companies, regulators and government.
The Action Group has three work streams to a) improve guidance on regulatory compliance in the remittance sector; b) improve understanding of risk and c) develop a ‘Safer Corridor’ pilot for UK-Somali remittances.
New guidance has been developed for remittance companies and for banks that provide services to remittance companies.
Detailed consultations have been held with banks and remittance companies to assess understanding of the risks in the sector and identify how these risks can be better managed.
The Safer Corridor pilot for UK-Somali remittances is developing a set of measures to improve the security and transparency of remittance transactions.
The pilot is a unique collaboration between industry, banks, regulators, government and the community which work together through the Advisory Group to design and implement the project. A stakeholder group is also being set up in Somalia.

Implementation of the pilot is on track against the plan agreed by the Advisory Group. A design and consultation phase will continue until September to identify interventions. These interventions will be tested and evaluated September to end-December 2014.
Leading technical experts are developing proposals to use technology to improve customer due diligence and develop an independent ‘trusted third party’ to monitor and audit remittance transactions from sender to receiver.
Discussions are being held with remittance companies, regulators and banks to identify ‘regulation-plus’ measures that can be implemented to make our MSBs ‘best-in-class’ for compliance and risk management.
And, we will conduct detailed consumer research to understand how you use remittance services, to ensure that they continue to meet your needs and protect your rights as consumers.
The challenges faced by UK remittance markets are global. The UK Government is working closely with international partners. The UK and World Bank succeeded in securing the commitment of the G20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion to call for action.
Information on all of this work can be found on the Action Group for Cross Border Remittances webpage: grow/supporting-pages/enabling-the-continued-flow-of-remittances.

What is happening in the Market?
SOMSA has provided information on which companies are providing remittance services to Somalia. Currently, all SOMSA members remain operational:
Amana Express Amal UK
Bakaal Worldwide

Dahabshiil Hodan Global Iftin Express Juba Express
Iftin Express Juba Express Kaah Express Ladan Express
Medina Money Transfer Mustaqbal UK
Olompic Money Transfer Tawakal UK

Towfiiq Express

Useful links
Action Group on Cross Border Remittances
Somali Matters IAMTN developing-countries-economies-to-grow/supporting- pages/enabling-the-continued-flow-of-remittances. 

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