Kenya has won the bid to host the Pan-African Payments and Settlement System (PAPSS), an electronic system that will support a bank network enabling cross-border payments across Africa. The announcement was made by President Ruto at the launch of AfCFTA’s Trade and Development Centre at Strathmore University.
“Because we are leaders in the technology space and promoters of AfCFTA and any institution that supports the integration of our continent, we have gladly accepted to host the headquarters of pan-African payment system in Kenya,” stated President Ruto.
PAPSS is a swift payment solution that facilitates seamless money transfers in local currencies. This allows users to send funds via any bank within the PAPSS network, and recipients can conveniently withdraw the equivalent amount in their local currency.
The hosting of PAPSS in Kenya will have a number of benefits for African traders. For example, traders will be able to conduct financial transactions in real-time, and there will be no need to convert local African currencies into other foreign denominations such as the US Dollar or the Euro. This conversion process has contributed to delays in financial transactions, presenting a hurdle to intra-African trade.
The platform is anticipated to result in savings of approximately Sh750 billion (equivalent to $5 billion) for the continent by reducing the expenses incurred by traders when converting their national currencies into a third currency.
At the Strathmore meeting, President Ruto also announced that the payment platform will be adopted by African Union’s Assembly of Heads of State and Government in February 2024.