Kenyans transacted at least Ksh4.13 trillion on mobile money in 2019, a new report by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has shown.
This was a rise by Ksh361.39 billion compared to the amount transacted in 2018 according to the data.
On average, subscribers transacted Ksh11.91 billion daily throughout the year, reflecting a hike in demand of the mobile money services in the county.
CBK says that the money transactions in 2019 was equivalent to 46.15 percent of the estimated size of the estimated size of Kenya’s economy, Ksh9.4 trillion.
As compared to 2018 transactions, which stood at Ksh3.98 trillion, the transactions represented a 48.82 of Kenya’s GDP estimated at 8.9 trillion.
For December alone, at least 10.67 million mobile money accounts were opened, hitting the 58.36 million mark for the first time in history.
Also, in the same month, mobile money transfers hit a record of Ksh382.93 billion, representing a growth of Ksh23.67 billion from December 2018.
According to a Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) report covering July-September 2018, 730.2 million transactions valued at Ksh2.027 trillion were recorded during the period up from 611.3 million transactions valued at Ksh1.9 trillion the previous quarter.
At the same time, mobile commerce transactions went up by 8.8 per cent to reach 526.9 million valued at Ksh1.5 5 trillion while person-to-person transfers were valued at KSh718.2 billion.
This comes at a time the Kenya Revenue Authority has vowed to track bank accounts and mobile money accounts to enforce taxation to individuals avoiding to pay taxes.
In October last year, the taxman announced that it intends to net an additional half-a-million taxpayers to raise Ksh60 billion by targeting their mobile phone data and professional bodies.
KRA will try to match data from bank accounts with holders’ professions, including doctors, real estate developers and suppliers to ensure that everybody pays their fair share of taxes.
“This approach, commonly internally referred to as Data Driven Compliance, is meant not only to help us optimise our compliance and audit interventions but in addition to assure objectivity in our engagement with taxpayers,” said Commissioner General John Njiraini last year.
Currently, only four million citizens formally pay taxes, out of close to 20 million registered voters.