Bank Windhoek has announced that it will phase out all cross border cheques and bank drafts within the Common Monetary Area (CMA) with effect from 22 July.
The CMA includes Namibia, South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland.
For Namibian clients, it means that as from 22 July, no South African issued cheques can be deposited at any Namibian bank and that Namibian cheques issued to South African individuals or companies can no longer be deposited at any South African bank.
Clients are requested to make use of electronic funds transfers (ETF) for cross border payments in future.
Bank Windhoek chief executive officer corporate and communication services, Marlize Horn, said cross border cheques account for less than 1% of all cheque payments compared to approximately 10% of electronic cross border payments.
“For such a low volume of cross border cheques, it is not economically viable to establish the decision to establish a separate inter-regional payment system for cheques as part of Sadc Integrated Regional payment system (SIRESS) initiative, hence the decision to phase them out.
“The risk associated with cheque payments is also much higher compared to electronic payments,” she said.
However, both businesses clients, as well as individual clients, will still be able to make cross-border payments via Bank Windhoek’s EPAC Internet Banking Application or alternatively, Bank Windhoek offers over the counter internet based cross border EFT payments.
The phasing out of cross border cheques forms part of the implementation of the Sadc SIRESS initiative currently in progress.