Pakistani Women Own 50% Mobile Phones: Report

According to the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSMA), just half of Pakistani women own a mobile phone, compared to 81 percent of men, and without coordinated efforts, women will continue to lag, preventing them from progressing along the mobile money user journey.

GSMA’s “The State of the Industry Report on Mobile Money” found that Nigeria and Pakistan had exacerbated their gender gap in account ownership.

India and Pakistan have the highest gender differences in mobile money account ownership due to social norms and low female mobile ownership.

Bill payments reached over $88 billion in 2022, up 36%. Bill payments were popular: 46% of Kenyan mobile money users, 36% in Indonesia, 27% in Senegal, and 25% in Pakistan had paid a bill in the past 30 days.

Mobile money for international transfers varies by region and country. Mobile money-enabled international remittances reached $21 billion in 2022, up 28%.

According to the GSMA 2022 Consumer Survey, 20% of mobile money users in Senegal and Bangladesh received monies from relatives or friends abroad in the past 30 days. Pakistan, Kenya, and Ghana had substantially lower rates (6–9%).

JazzCash and Telenor Bank’s EasyPaisa cards in Pakistan allow account holders to pay online and offline businesses and withdraw cash from ATMs. Such cards can boost financial inclusion in rural or low-income markets by giving unbanked people access to payment networks.

The 2022 GSMA Consumer Survey indicated that mobile money marketplaces use savings accounts unevenly. 30% of Kenyan mobile money users have sent money to a savings account within 30 days. Over 51% of Nigerians agreed. Only 4% of Senegalese and 8% of Pakistanis did so.

Over the past year, men’s cellphone ownership grew faster than women’s in five of the seven survey countries with data (Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Pakistan). In the last year, Pakistani men’s account ownership rose from 19% to 26%, while women’s remained at 4%.

Women utilise mobile money to send and receive remittances more than males in Pakistan.

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