Africa Biz Construction and Business News
Zambian Government Distributes $22M in Rural Subsidies Using Secure Biometric Solution
June 4, 2018
Ingenico Group, a digital payments solutions provider based in Paris, just supported a roll-out of its secure biometric agricultural subsidy program for the Zambian government.
Ingenico Group supports the Zambian government in deploying an innovative fraud-less subsidy program in rural areas. Photo: Ingenico Group
This program, carried out in partnership with Paycode, allowed for the distribution of a total of 22 million dollars in subsidies in rural Zambia within 3 months.
Since 7 November 2017, the program has allowed registered farmers to access a government-funded program, the FISP subsidy, in which farmers make a co-payment of ZMK 400 (equivalent to USD 40) and the Ministry of Agriculture provides an additional ZMK 1600 (equivalent to USD 160) to reach a total of ZMK 2000 (equivalent to USD 200). During enrolment, a program agent captures the farmers’ fingerprints and associates them with their ID for authentication. Subsequently, farmers are issued with an FISP (Farmer Input Support Program) electronic wallet to be used at participating approved agro-dealers equipped with Ingenico Group biometric smart terminals. During the transaction, they can use their fingerprint for authentication. The previously unbanked users can now access agricultural material subsidies in 30 Zambian districts.
In a pioneering move for areas that are lacking widespread financial infrastructure, the Zambian government has been able to successfully bring banking and additional funding to farmers in rural regions. Ingenico Group was chosen as a provider of biometric smart terminals because of its strong experience and expertise, the robustness of its solution as well as its world-class biometric technology.
Ingenico Group, jointly with its long-term partner Paycode, worked closely with the Ministry of Agriculture to design and launch this solution. Gabe Ruhan, Director of Paycode Zambia, commented: “We are proud to have served the Ministry of Agriculture by providing world-class technology that works in the remotest environments. We look forward to expanding our solution so every Zambian can have their money at their fingertips.”
Francois Voyron, Middle East and Africa Managing Director at Ingenico Group, commented: “This solution demonstrates our ability to support governments in deploying innovative subsidy programs rapidly, successfully and in remote regions. As a matter of fact within 3 months, 91% of eligible farmers have already purchased materials using the new solution.”
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