The POS terminals will be operational before 2017 is out, in keeping with the National Financial Inclusion Policy.
In his Mid-Term Fiscal Policy Review Statement last Thursday, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said: “The promotion of digital finance by the Reserve Bank saw 32 629 point of sale ‘swipe’ machines and 40 590 mobile money agents deployed across the country by December 2016, covering all sectors of the economy beyond the formal retailers to include both public and private service providers.
“In line with the National Financial Inclusion Policy thrust for the period to 2020, the target is to deploy about 200 000 POS machines and 90 000 mobile money agents. “Distribution of the POS machines will also cater for our education sector, with about 9 000 schools requiring POS machines to easily transact.”
Minister Chinamasa said the value of non-cash transactions grew from US$56,9 billion in 2015 to US$61,7 billion in 2016.
Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe president Dr Takavafira Zhou said, Fundamentally, the notion of giving 9 000 schools POS machines is really good as it will spare parents from queuing at banks.
‘‘This will also ease cash demands at banks. ‘‘Parents who were travelling long distances to deposit money can now go straight to schools without necessarily go to a banking hall.”
Harare-based economist Mr Persistence Gwanyanya added: “The extension of POS machines to schools will go a long way in promoting financial inclusion and a cashlite society.
‘‘Schools transact a great deal in cash. Therefore, giving them POS machines will make it easier for many parents who use plastic money.’’
– State media