Kenya regulators warn MPs on Safaricom split bill - Mobile World Live

Kenya regulators warn MPs on Safaricom split bill

11 JUL 2019

Kenya’s central bank and communications regulators urged caution about imposing a law which would force Safaricom to separate its m-Pesa business from its communications unit, Business Daily Africa reported.

MPs in the country are in the process of debating its communications policies with some in favour of a law requiring operators to register mobile money services businesses separately from core activities.

Although the rules would impact all providers, with Safaricom the dominant player in both markets such laws would likely have the most telling impact on its business.

In a submission to MPs, The Communications Authority of Kenya and Central Bank of Kenya warned a lot of investigation was required on the issue before forcing a split. The country’s principal secretary for ICT and Innovation, Jerome Ochieng, also opposed the move, adding it would potentially stifle innovation.

The issue of competition in Kenyan market is an issue politicians and regulators have regularly investigated over the last two years, with calls to spin-out mobile money units nothing new.

Safaricom and its supporters argue forcing such splits would punish operators for their own successes, while those in favour of the move argue it is necessary to curb the dominance of the market leader.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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