Community, Diaspora and Immigration

Send Money Africa: Helping the Diaspora Send Money Home

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Do you send money home to Africa?  If so, you are one of an estimated 30 million Africans worldwide who could benefit from the World Bank’s Send Money Africa database and website. Send Money Africa  helps the Diaspora make informed choices by providing information on the costs and speed of money transfer services offered by banks, post offices, and money transfer operators in 27 African markets.

Costs involved in sending money to Africa vary widely among providers and from one country to another. Moreover, the cost structure of the money transfer market — which involves both exchange rate margins and up-front fees — makes comparing transaction costs a complex and time consuming operation. However, on the Send Money Africa website, senders and recipients can quickly evaluate providers and make good decisions with a few clicks of the mouse.

The World Bank estimates that, if the cost of sending money could be reduced by even five percentage points relative to the value sent, recipients in developing countries would receive over $16 billion more annually than they do now. This easy-to-use web tool is a first step towards putting more money back in the hands of senders and receivers in Africa and stimulating enhanced competition in African remittance markets. The team plans to expand the site to include information for additional African remittance markets over the coming year.

Send Money Africa is part of the African Institute for Remittances (AIR) project, which is managed by the World Bank’s African Diaspora Program. It is an initiative in which the World Bank and selected development partners — the African Development Bank, the International Organization for Migration and the European Commission — are collaborating to facilitate the African Union Commission (AUC) and its member states in establishing the AIR. The project is funded by the European Commission and implemented by the World Bank.

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