Qatar brings innovation to ASEAN

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Myanmar mobile1Good news emerged recently with regards to Qatar’s business involvement in Southeast Asia. Not only that the country’s telecom group Ooredoo announced that it will jump straight into 3G mobile phone services with its network rollout in Myanmar, it also signalised tremendous success with its mobile money services that are tailor-made for developing countries.

Indosat, the second largest telecommunication operator in Indonesia by revenue and the largest subsidiary of the Ooredoo Group with 54 million subscribers, launched its Dompetku Mobile Wallet and Mobile Money Service in July 2013 in partnership with the local branch of QNB. The service targets Indonesia’s unbanked – those who do not hold a bank account -, amounting to approximately 60 per cent of the population. The service provides customers a low-cost alternative to brick-and-mortar banking.

And it has been received so positive that Indosat was awarded “Best Mobile Money Deployment in Asia” in early November at the 2013 Mobile Money Global Awards for its fast deployment of this life-enriching service in Indonesia, its efficient and unique model of deployment and the wide range of banking and finance options the service offers.

Not bad indeed. In Tunisia, where Ooredoo also has a subsidiary, Tunisiana Ooredoo, the company has partnered with La Poste Tunisienne on mobiflouss, a mobile money service which enables customers to top-up their airtime account, transfer money and pay bills via their mobile – with similar success as in Indonesia.

Next station will be Myanmar, a future key market for Ooredoo, where it won a mobile license in June 2013. The operator views the country as a prime market for money services because its 60mn population has limited access to conventional financial services, but will have widespread mobile phone access as Ooredoo rolls out its network over the coming years.

Indeed, mobile banking should be ideally suited to Myanmar as it has the potential to help Myanmar provide basic accounts and payment services to most of its citizens. However, to achieve this, a reliable mobile phone networks is necessary which hasn’t existed so far. And there will be the need to teach people how to use these new services, because not many average persons in Myanmar are tech-savvy enough and relatively few have ever used mobile phones.

This comment is part of Inside Investor’s weekly column series in Qatar’s leading newspaper Gulf Times and is published every Sunday.

Gulf Times

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Good news emerged recently with regards to Qatar’s business involvement in Southeast Asia. Not only that the country’s telecom group Ooredoo announced that it will jump straight into 3G mobile phone services with its network rollout in Myanmar, it also signalised tremendous success with its mobile money services that are tailor-made for developing countries.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Myanmar mobile1Good news emerged recently with regards to Qatar’s business involvement in Southeast Asia. Not only that the country’s telecom group Ooredoo announced that it will jump straight into 3G mobile phone services with its network rollout in Myanmar, it also signalised tremendous success with its mobile money services that are tailor-made for developing countries.

Indosat, the second largest telecommunication operator in Indonesia by revenue and the largest subsidiary of the Ooredoo Group with 54 million subscribers, launched its Dompetku Mobile Wallet and Mobile Money Service in July 2013 in partnership with the local branch of QNB. The service targets Indonesia’s unbanked – those who do not hold a bank account -, amounting to approximately 60 per cent of the population. The service provides customers a low-cost alternative to brick-and-mortar banking.

And it has been received so positive that Indosat was awarded “Best Mobile Money Deployment in Asia” in early November at the 2013 Mobile Money Global Awards for its fast deployment of this life-enriching service in Indonesia, its efficient and unique model of deployment and the wide range of banking and finance options the service offers.

Not bad indeed. In Tunisia, where Ooredoo also has a subsidiary, Tunisiana Ooredoo, the company has partnered with La Poste Tunisienne on mobiflouss, a mobile money service which enables customers to top-up their airtime account, transfer money and pay bills via their mobile – with similar success as in Indonesia.

Next station will be Myanmar, a future key market for Ooredoo, where it won a mobile license in June 2013. The operator views the country as a prime market for money services because its 60mn population has limited access to conventional financial services, but will have widespread mobile phone access as Ooredoo rolls out its network over the coming years.

Indeed, mobile banking should be ideally suited to Myanmar as it has the potential to help Myanmar provide basic accounts and payment services to most of its citizens. However, to achieve this, a reliable mobile phone networks is necessary which hasn’t existed so far. And there will be the need to teach people how to use these new services, because not many average persons in Myanmar are tech-savvy enough and relatively few have ever used mobile phones.

This comment is part of Inside Investor’s weekly column series in Qatar’s leading newspaper Gulf Times and is published every Sunday.

Gulf Times

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