Postal Dept's income from money order service slumps

Earnings drop by 95pc in six years

Rezaul Karim | Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Government's resource mobilisation from money order, the once-popular public money transfer machinery which now turns into electronic money transfer service, dropped by more than 95 per cent in last six years.
People familiar with the development at Postal Department told the FE that this sorry state of electronic money order service which used to contribute an adequate amount of resources to the national exchequer has been created mainly due to introduction of the mobile financial system.
The government earned only Tk 13 million from money order related transactions in the past fiscal year against Tk 282.30 million in the fiscal year (FY) 2011-12, a 95.4 per cent decline, according to the document received by the FE.
However, Postal Department is now trying to find ways to restore the government's facility which all the people of the society enjoyed earlier as a means of secured money transfer.
High officials at the department told the FE that they may offer lower charge to the customers aiming to survive in the competition.
When contacted, Director General of Postal Department Sushanto Kumar Mondal said the department's income has been declining since the FY 2011-12 due to the introduction of privately-owned mobile financial services.
"We are trying to revive our glory of money order. Finally, we will be able to reach our goal," he said.
He added: "A move is underway to lower service charges for sending money through electronic money transfer service (EMTS) to 50 per cent from existing private mobile money transfer facility."
The department has sent a proposal to the finance ministry in this regard. "We hope that government's income will increase by 100 per cent from money order issue sector if the proposed charges are implemented," he also said.
The department is now a profitable entity of the government. Currently, every sector of postal department is making profits except for money order issue, he mentioned.
Presently, Tk 18.50 service charge is needed to send Tk 1000 through EMTS, a department source said.
Privately-run mobile money transfer service is an easy and fast way to send money to a receiver's mobile phone anytime a day.
But postal department's money order service named EMTS, commonly known as mobile money order service, continues till the evening. For this reason, people prefer private mobile money transfer service to EMTS, experts said.
The number of money order issues was 4.88 million in the FY 2011-12. It came down to over 0.58 million in the FY 2016-17, according to the postal department data.
In the last fiscal year, the department's total income stood at Tk 3.74 billion, a 24 per cent rise comparing to the same period a year ago, the DG said.

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