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Vietnam to launch Mobile Money services in Q2 2021
Phi Nhat 20:54, 2021/03/11
Vietnamese telecom companies are accelerating the preparation for the launching of direct carrier billing services in next few months.

Vietnamese telecom companies are expected to launch Mobile Money service in the second quarter of 2021 right after its pilot implementation was approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on March 9. 

 Vietnam will launch Mobile Money services in Q2 2021. Photo: Cong Hung

Last July, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc agreed the deployment of the pilot project on direct carrier billing services, also known as Mobile Money, which allows people to transfer money through smartphone account instead of a bank one. The transaction limit is set at VND10 million (US$428.9) per month.

The services aim to contribute to the development of cashless payments, increasing the access and use of financial services to people in rural and remote areas, borders and islands across the country.

Subjects allowed to participate in the pilot project are enterprises who were granted the license to provide e-wallet payment intermediary services and telecom carriers.

According to regulations, the subjects are only allowed to provide direct carrier billing services to transfer money and pay for legal goods and services in the country and not for cross-border services. The results of the pilot program will help competent authorities review, develop and issue official legal regulations for service provision in Vietnam. 

The carriers will submit a trial application dossier for Mobile Money service to the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV). The SBV will consider and consult related ministries such as the Ministry of Information and Communications, the Ministry of Public Security, and then agree to grant a test license to the mobile network operator. 

According to Nguyen Son Hai, Deputy General Director of VNPT Communications Corporation (under VNPT Group), the company will submit its trial document to the State Bank next week. “We are expected to provide this service in the second quarter”, Hai said.

MobiFone, the second-largest telecom company in Vietnam, will send the application for a trial license to the SBV next two weeks, Bui Son Nam, Deputy General Director of MobiFone Telecom Corporation, said. In the second quarter of 2021, the operator hopes to officially provide the service to users.

Truong Quang Viet, Deputy General Director of Viettel Digital Services Corporation (under Viettel, the Vietnamese-military-run group) said that by 2025, Viettel is expected to have about 26 million subscribers using the services, in which the average spending (for goods and services of small value) would be of VND300,000 (US$12.9) per subscriber.

To achieve the goal of becoming a cashless society, the government targeted to reduce the ratio of cash payments from 11.3% in 2019 to less than 10% by the end of this year, and 8% by 2025.

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