Ingenico Group, the provider of seamless payment solutions, has supported the roll-out of a secure biometric solution in Zambia in partnership with Paycode. The program allowed the distribution of US $22 million subsidies in rural Zambia within 3 months.
Since November 2017, the program has allowed registered farmers to access a government-funded program, the Farmer Input Support Program (FISP) subsidy, in which farmers make a co-payment of ZMK 400 (equivalent to US $40) and the Ministry of Agriculture provides an additional ZMK 1600 (equivalent to US $160) to reach a total of ZMK 2000 (equivalent to US $200).
During enrollment, a program agent captures the farmers’ fingerprints and associates them with their ID for authentication. Subsequently, farmers are issued with a FISP 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 input 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 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, MD for Middle East and Africa 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.”