Sunday, November 28, 2021

Holding company for BotswanaPost, BSB in the offing

Government is upbeat that the merger of Botswana Couriers, Botswana Savings Bank and the BotswanaPost will be concluded before the end of the year, top government official said earlier in the week.

“We are busy registering a Holding company which all the three entities will fall under. We are also busy appointing the board members,” Mabua Mabua, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Transport and Communication said.

The merger of the three organisations has been delayed by aligning the BotswanaPost’s legislation so that it can operate as a corporate entity rather than a government department under the old arrangement.

Some of the measures that government is putting in place are to try to fast track the establishment of a Postal bank. A consultant has already been appointed to look into it a come up with recommendation by October this year.

Botswana Postal Services has been eyeing a commercial banking licence that will eventually see it as the financial institution with the largest footprint in the country.

Mid last year, parliament passed a law that paved the way for BotswanaPost to become a fully fledged bank–which will make it the first indigenous bank in the country. It is hoped that Botswana Building Society (BBS) will approach the next parliamentary session seeking permission to change its legislation to allow it to become a commercial bank.

The move will put both BotswanaPost and BBS against the foreign dominated banks for the tiny but cash a washed market. The local commercial banks’ assets are valued at over P 40 billion.

BotswanaPost headed by Pele Moleta has 122 branches sprawled across the country and is intending to start with 10 bank branches.

Lately, BotswanaPost has been one of the leaders in product innovation and partnering with other organisations in a bid to bring services to the people and the business community.
Earlier this year, it opened the trail-blazing safe deposit boxes at Masa Centre which is the first of its kind in southern African region to be run by Postal Service. The boxes have been taken up by the commercial banks for their “high net earning client” of multi-millionaires.

It also announced a partnership with First National Bank to make purchase of pre-paid electricity easier through new channels. Botswana Post has been given Super Vendor status by Botswana Power Corporation, which recently converted many households’ metes into pre-paid ones.

It is also aiming to becoming government’s transactional hub that will see people transacting 24 hours to pay for government application forms such as licence, Omang, passports and also be able to bills, postal boxes, money transfer and taxes through the Postal Service websites- a move that will reduce lines at the Postal Services and their business partners.

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