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Awash Bank Partners with Mastercard to Launch Prepaid Card and Payment Gateway in Ethiopia


Awash Bank has partnered with Mastercard to introduce Awash prepaid cards in Ethiopia, enabling customers and merchants to make and receive payments online anywhere worldwide. The Mastercard-branded plastic cards were launched at a press conference in Awash Bank’s headquarters, marking the beginning of this collaboration.

The prepaid card allows for contactless transactions on ATMs and POS terminals. With it, customers can withdraw cash, pay at stores, and shop online wherever Mastercard is accepted. A virtual version also facilitates online purchases globally. Notably, a key feature is the ability to load funds at Forex bureaus, making the card ideal for international payments and travel.

“This innovative offering demonstrates Awash Bank’s commitment to convenient, secure financial solutions,” said Yohannes Merga, Marketing Officer. “Awash Mastercard empowers travellers to manage finances seamlessly.”

In addition to the cards, Awash Bank will roll out Mastercard’s Payment Gateway Services as part of the collaboration. This enables local merchants with websites and apps to accept international online payments. In turn, customers worldwide can place orders and pay integrated merchants.

“Our collaboration with Awash Bank drives financial inclusion in Africa,” said Shehryar Ali, Mastercard’s Senior VP for East Africa. “Our advancements enable consumers to transact simply, securely, and conveniently.”

To obtain the prepaid card, individuals over 18 years old can visit a Forex bureau and open an Awash account, providing travel documents.

The launch of the Awash Mastercard and Payment Gateway is a milestone for Ethiopia’s digital transformation, enabling smooth cross-border payments and aligning with the country’s financial inclusion strategy.

With this forward-thinking partnership, Awash Bank has taken a major step in expanding its card services. Prepaid cardholders gain flexibility, convenience, and security for online purchases and travel expenses. Meanwhile, integrating Mastercard’s gateway opens up ecommerce opportunities globally for Ethiopian businesses.

Looking ahead, the collaboration is set to accelerate Awash Bank’s strategic growth in card issuance and acceptance. As digital payments rise in Ethiopia, the bank is positioned to be a leader in facilitating financial inclusion for customers benefiting from seamless transactions domestically and worldwide.

Overall, this launch represents a watershed moment for Ethiopia’s card business, with Awash Bank continuing to deliver innovative offerings that advance the country’s payments landscape. The Awash Mastercard gives customers new financial freedom while empowering travellers. With visionary partnerships like this one, banks like Awash can better connect Ethiopia to global commerce.


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