This landmark agreement between Barwaqo Microfinance Bank and the multinational MoneyTrans is the first of its kind and represents a paradigm shift in the money remittances scene.
Barwaqo Bank has been functioning effectively for the past calendar year. Barwaqo Bank offers a range of financial services that target low-income individuals and small businesses that lack access to banking loans. Barwaqo Bank is one of the first microfinance providers to open in Somalia and by offering services such as microcredit, micro saving and insurance products, Barwaqo Bank aims to help fuel economic growth and job creation for the under privileged segments in society.
Barwaqo Bank also recently launched its money transfer operations globally, this in turn allows many Somalis to send money to Somalia via the most secure way possible as money transferred enters the customers Barwaqo Bank Account, this has allowed efficient inter banking between consumers.
With offices in Somalia and Europe, Barwaqo Bank is on course to benefit from recent changes in terms of regulation between money providers. The CEO of Barwaqo Bank Mr. Abdisalan Musa said "the issues we have had with Somali money transfer companies was according to regulators, the recipient was always unknown which made regulators wary of facilitating such funds in case these funds ended up in the wrong hands. However, in our case its clear who the recipient is because they have online current or savings accounts with us."
The drama between Somali money transfer companies and regulators has been a consistent issue for the past two years and as a result many Somali money transfer companies have had their accounts closed by regulators and major banks, both here in the UK and the US. Yet, at Barwaqo Bank, there has been a consistent focus on ensuring that such stringent standards are met. It is for this reason that MoneyTrans, one of the largest money transfer companies in the Western world has signed an agreement with Barwaqo Bank. This will enable Barwaqo Bank to truly reach its potential whilst at the same time providing many Somalis across Europe the opportunity to be able to remit money back home without facing any issues.
We also interviewed the CFO of Barwaqo Bank; Hassan M. Dudde who had this to say; "the average amount sent from abroad to Somalia is around $200 which barely covers a family’s basic day to day needs, as a result it is imperative that we ensure the money gets to those who need it the most. For this reason at Barwaqo Bank we insure that all transactions are recorded for both auditing and transparency purposes, in line with international regulatory frameworks".