The National – Friday, February 11, 2011
By BOSORINA ROBBY
BANK South Pacific is preparing to roll out a new product that will give convenience and safety to customers.
This will be made possible through the use of a new wireless technology
through the gadget called electronic fund transfer at point of sale (Eftpos) or “point of pay” terminal.
Already in use in some centres in the Pacific, the new concept is faster and easier to secure.
It is expected to be operational later this year.
BSP chief executive Ian Clyne yesterday said this Eftpos machine would be more advanced in that customers could pay for their shopping and also make deposits.
He said at the moment, this wireless concept was being trialed, and was successful, in Fiji.
Now, it is here in PNG where a team of experts are working to get it connected to all BSP branches and agencies nationwide.
Clyne said a wireless Eftpos machine costs US$750 (K1,969), which BSP would be bringing specially for the rural areas through its BSP rural programme.
The programme is community-oriented in which communities were to take ownership of , and be responsible for, the upkeep and safety of the agency whilst getting services from it.
Clyne said the focus this year would be on 90% of retail mass market customers who would be encouraged to bank with ATMs and Eftpos machines and to only visit main branches for loan applications and creation of new accounts, among many others.
He said the use of modern telecommunication advances such as cell phones would allow BSP to harness the wireless Eftpos, which was one of the many services BSP was introducing this year through retail banking.
BSP was also looking at using cell phones to make payments which would allow greater access to rural communities to basic payment and banking services.
BSP today has more than 2,900 Eftpos machines in the country and would be increasing the units to 6,000 in a few years time.
BSP Fiji would be increasing from 120 to 1,500 and BSP Solomon Islands would go from one to 100.
Clyne said the cost of all these new services and improvements would be substantial.
He stressed that this was an investment they were making in the name of service to Papua New Guinean society.