Safaricom Expands M-Pesa Transaction Limits to Spur Digital Economy Growth

Safaricom, Kenya’s telecommunications giant, has unleashed a wave of change in the digital payment landscape by tripling its daily transaction limits on the M-Pesa mobile money platform to an impressive KES 500,000. This strategic move, granted with the Central Bank of Kenya’s (CBK) approval, bolsters Safaricom’s competitive edge against traditional banks in the ever-evolving digital payment sphere.

In addition to this monumental shift, both individuals and businesses can now hold up to half a million shillings in their M-Pesa wallets. This expansion indicates a notable shift of M-Pesa from its roots as a person-to-person payment system towards a robust e-commerce tool, ready to propel Kenya into an era of financial transformation.

This isn’t Safaricom’s first leap into uncharted waters. In 2020, amid the tumult of the Covid-19 pandemic, the CBK sanctioned the doubling of M-Pesa’s transaction limits to KES 150,000 daily and account limits to KES 300,000. The fact that this latest move marks the second instance within three years of the CBK granting Safaricom the ability to raise account and daily transaction limits signifies the diminishing concerns around money laundering risks associated with mobile money.

Peter Ndegwa, CEO of Safaricom, expressed gratitude for the CBK’s guidance in enhancing M-Pesa’s compliance with financial regulations. He emphasized, “We appreciate the role that the Central Bank of Kenya has played by constantly providing guidance on innovations and protections that we have put in place to strengthen M-Pesa’s adherence to KYC [Know Your Customer guidelines], anti-money laundering and other financial regulations and safeguards.”

This evolution extends beyond M-Pesa as a mere transaction platform; it’s a catalyst for Kenya’s journey towards a cashless economy. As Peter Ndegwa aptly put it, “The increased account limits will provide customers and especially small businesses with increased convenience as the share of cashless transactions continues to rise.”

Yet, the playing field isn’t limited to Safaricom alone. Banks, with their aggressive forays into financial technology and payment solutions, have also come to the forefront. Through the inter-bank mobile payment channel, PesaLink, banks can transact up to KES 999,999, enjoying a competitive edge over M-Pesa.

The CBK’s move echoes the industry-wide shift, as the JamboPay e-wallet is also granted a daily mobile money transaction limit of KES 500,000. This expansion mirrors the pervasive role that mobile phones now play in the economy, contributing over half of Kenya’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) through mobile money transactions.

Although Safaricom has expanded daily transaction limits, the per transaction ceiling remains at KES 150,000. However, this enhancement empowers users to make multiple transactions, accumulating to a cap of KES 500,000 daily.

As the wheels of digital transformation continue to turn, Kenya’s mobile money landscape stands as a testament to innovation and adaptability. In an era where technology drives progress, Safaricom’s M-Pesa isn’t merely a transaction platform; it’s a conduit for economic empowerment, fueling the nation’s journey towards financial inclusivity and progress.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here