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MBABANE – It is a giant step towards improving the ease of doing business in the country.

Government and MTN Eswatini have partnered to launch an electronic tool for the payment of government services. Queuing at revenue offices to pay for services that include trading and liquor licences will soon be a thing of the past following the introduction of MTN Mobile Money (MoMo) payment, which can be done in easy steps. Minister for Commerce, Industry and Trade (CIT) Senator Manqoba Khumalo and MTN CEO Wandile Mtshali led officials during the launch at Royal Villas in Ezulwini yesterday. In his address, Khumalo, who doubles as Acting Minister of Information, Communication and Technology, stressed that the new platform resonated with government’s desire to improve the Kingdom’s ease of doing business ranking. Eswatini is currently ranked an unwelcome 121 out of 190 economies in the world.

The target is to be ranked among the top 10 countries in Africa in order to attract meaningful investment to grow the economy. The use of information technology solutions is a major component to achieving this vision. “The virus (COVID-19) has practically called for the interrogation of every aspect of the business model; in order to preserve as much as we can of the economy for future generations to come. “One is pleased to launch this e-payment platform; particularly at a time where cashless transactions seem to be the best way to conduct business.
“Not only will this tool lessen transaction costs; through the elimination of transport fees and the long queues that have become synonymous with most government transactions, but it will also minimise exposure to the pandemic as it reduces the exchange of cash and physical contact. Moreover, this will significantly reduce the amount of paper bills that are printed to prove payment transactions,” said the minister.


The payments will be made through the *468# channel, which is a platform specifically designed for government transactions through Mobile Money. First on the menu is the electronic payment of business registration services. This complements existing government services that are also accessible through government’s *468# channel. The payment of the trading and liquor licences, according to Registrar of Companies Msebe Malinga, who is one of the pioneers of the project, is expected to start in the next few weeks. “Hopefully, we shall soon be able to also pay for trading and liquor licence services as the platform evolves,” said the minister.


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