Honiara, Solomon Islands
The groundbreaking mobile money project in Solomon Islands is one step closer to a full commercial launch after the Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI) approved Our Telekom Mobile Money application and the service is now in beta testing phase.
Our Telekom Mobile Money, is set to become the country's most innovative mobile money service, and it is being jointly developed by Our Telekom, the national mobile network operator, and the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF)'s Pacific Digital Economy Programme that is supported by the Government of Australia.
The service will be thoroughly tested during the beta phase by human users, including technical experts and regulators, in a controlled environment to uncover and resolve any teething issues before the full launch.
Full market deployment is set for April 2023, with the service regulated by CBSI.
Our Telekom Chief Executive Officer, Christina Lasaqa, said:
“The beta Launch of Our Telekom Mobile Money is progressing well with our Telekom staff in Honiara and the Provincial offices. We are trialing out the service now to ensure all requirements are met prior to having it available to our customers in April 2023.
"Our Telekom staff are very excited about the roll-out of this Mobile Money service as they are now already seeing the benefits of accessing digital financial services from anywhere in the country, as long as there is Telekom mobile coverage.”
The mobile money project aims to help build a thriving national digital payments ecosystem and extend financial services to last-mile users in rural areas through a secure and easy way to send, receive, deposit, and withdraw funds.
Testing includes sending/receiving money, cash in and cash out, and other functions such as checking balance, Mobile TopUp, Mini Statement and resetting PIN. Testing also includes fine-tuning the interface for agents who will be responsible for facilitating transactions, with the objective of streamlining the service and optimizing user experience for the commercial launch.
UNCDF Solomon Islands Technical Specialist, Zoe Victoria Tate said:
“It is encouraging to see the progress of Our Telekom Mobile Money service towards a commercial launch. Key partnerships, including with the Central Bank and the Telecommunication Commission, show the commitment of all parties towards this important mobile money service. Security, trust, and reliability are essential foundations for this service, which will be a critical enabler to building an inclusive digital economy in the Solomon Islands. We are looking forward to seeing how youth, women entrepreneurs and MSMEs will leverage Our Telekom Mobile Money service to participate and innovate in the digital economy.”
The Pacific Digital Economy Programme is jointly implemented by UNCDF, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
The UN Capital Development Fund makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 46 least developed countries (LDCs). UNCDF offers “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development. UNCDF’s financing models work through three channels: (1) inclusive digital economies, which connects individuals, households, and small businesses with financial eco-systems that catalyse participation in the local economy, and provide tools to climb out of poverty and manage financial lives; (2) local transformative finance, which capacitates localities through fiscal decentralisation, innovative municipal finance, and structured project finance to drive local economic expansion and sustainable development; and (3) investment finance, which provides catalytic financial structuring, de-risking, and capital deployment to drive SDG impact and domestic resource mobilisation.
ABOUT OUR TELEKOM
Solomon Telekom Company Limited (Our Telekom) is a joint venture company between Solomon Islands National Provident Fund, (SINPF) which holds 97.32% of the shares, and the Investment Corporation of the Solomon Islands (ICSI) which owns 2.68% of the shares.
Our Telekom is a full service provider with the largest mobile footprint in the Solomon Islands. Services include; Mobile 2G/3G/4G LTE, Fixed lines, VDSL & GPON, Wired/Wireless Broadband, FTTP, IPVPN, Domain & email provisioning, DR facilities management, Co-location, IT desktop services, IPLC services, Television services, and VOD services.
For further information contact: [Sheldon Chanel, Communications Officer at UNCDF/UNDP Pacific] [email protected]; website: https://www.uncdf.org/