The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) announces an MoU with Mastercard to join forces in facilitating the growth of payments activities across MENA region and beyond

The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) and Mastercard, announced today the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Under the terms of this MoU, Mastercard and Buna (the cross-border and multi-currency payment system owned by the AMF), will seek strategic interoperability between their respective systems to grow and facilitate the exchange of cross-border payments across the Middle East and North Africa region and international markets.

By putting in place a solid foundation of interoperability, Buna and Mastercard Cross Border Services will exploit their capacities and benefit from their agile systems and advanced technology, to offer their participants an efficient and secure reciprocal route, allowing them to increase substantially their footprint in the payment industry.

This joint initiative of Buna and Mastercard is in line with both entities’ strategic objectives, to promote financial inclusion and cater for the growing needs of consumers and corporates for an easy, reliable, and modern access to payment solutions.  Additionally, the interoperability between the two systems, represent a solid proof of their intention to contribute positively to the global efforts that aims at improving cross-border payments efficiency and accessibility.

Commenting on this MoU, His Excellency Dr. Abdulrahman A. Al Hamidy, Director General Chairman of the Board of the Arab Monetary Fund, stressed on the strategic aspects of this cooperation and the important value it delivers to the financial community in the Arab region and beyond.

H.E Dr. Al Hamidy said: “Achieving interoperability between Buna and Mastercard represents a strategic milestone in Buna’s plan to contribute to the growth of commercial and investment ties across the Arab region and with global markets. With this initiative in place, Buna continues to showcase its relentless pursual of building global reach that benefit the financial community in the Arab world and beyond. Both Buna and Mastercard will capitalize on this partnership to add value to their respective ecosystems, by creating innovative solutions, in the cross-border and multi-currency payment field, that are diversified, efficient, easy to access. The aim is to achieve better risk control and to cater for the strategic and evolving needs of the financial and payment community in the Arab region and beyond.”

Khalid Elgibali, Division President, MENA, Mastercard said, “With 95% of consumers in the Middle East and Africa embracing the power of digital payment technologies, it is crucial that we build infrastructure that enables the seamless movement of money. Our partnership with AMF will serve to boost cross-border trade in the region and connect governments, businesses and consumers faster than ever before. Through our multi-rail strategy, Mastercard is working to transform the payments landscape by ensuring universal acceptance and interoperability and help drive inclusive economic growth.”

Buna, is a cross-border payment system owned by the Arab Monetary Fund, aiming to enable financial institutions and central banks in the Arab region and beyond to send and receive payments in local currencies as well as key international currencies in a safe, cost- effective, risk-controlled, and transparent environment. Buna offers participants modern payment solutions that comply with international standards, principles, and compliance requirements. Thanks to its cross-border payment system, Buna contributes to exploring and strengthening opportunities for economic and financial integration in the Arab region and supporting investment ties with the global trading partners. Buna welcomes the inclusion of all banks that meet the criteria and conditions for participation, primarily the standards and procedures of compliance aspects.