On 29 June 2016, Bank of the Lao PDR (BoL) hosted the seventh quarterly Digital Financial Services (DFS) Working Group meeting, with the support of the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) programme Mobile Money for the Poor (MM4P) and the programme Making Access to Finance more Inclusive for Poor People (MAFIPP).
Today UNCDF celebrates its 50th anniversary.
Much has changed in the world since UNCDF’s founding in 1966, and while its programmes have evolved over the years, its guiding mission has remained very much the same: making finance work for the poor.
Caisse d'Epargne et de Credit du Cameroun (CEC) is organized as a member cooperative with ten branches and over 56,000 active members. Through UNCDF’s MicroLead program and supported by technical service providers BASIX and Pamiga, in April 2015, CEC began rolling out digital financial services using a proprietary agent network. We interviewed CEC’s Eric Kenkolla, Director Information Systems, about their agent network.
MicroLead: What type of agent network is CEC using?
A DFS Knowledge Sharing Workshop
How can financial service providers best adopt digital finance solutions (DFS)? What are the potential pitfalls, opportunities and challenges of digital finance?
This October, Burkina Faso financial service providers (FSPs), NGOs working with informal savings groups, an MNO, Fintechs and regulators met to share their experiences and answer these questions.
One of the biggest challenges to financial inclusion in Nepal, like in many least developed countries, is the lack of physical infrastructure linking low-income people in rural areas to digital platforms. Developing agent networks and other cash-in/cash-out points is one of the critical steps in bridging this access gap. Without access to digital service points, farmers, merchants, teachers, pensioners, etc., who are living in remote areas cannot possibly adopt financial services that would impact their businesses and lives.
In theory, a consumer in Benin has a number of different choices when it comes to formal, regulated financial services. He or she can opt for a mobile money account, currently offered by two main providers, that gives them access to their money through their phone, as well as a financial services agent. A more traditional bank account is also an option and typically utilized for savings or loans. And, consumers can use a microfinance institution (MFI), or other non-bank financial institutions which tend to be popular in Benin.
Orphaned and uneducated, Felicia Nimo had to struggle to make her way in life. Adopted along with her siblings by her aunt, she took her place at her aunt’s petty trading business. There, she learned the business, working there until she married.
Felicia opened a “chop bar,” and life was rosy until her husband fell seriously ill and was unable to work. The burden of supporting the family fell upon Felicia. Stretched between family and business obligations, her business suffered, and customers went elsewhere.
Representatives from UNCDF's local development finance team attended the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) 21st Ministerial Conference in Chiang Rai, Thailand.
The event is an annual meeting of GMS ministers. The meeting provides policy direction for programme and oversees progress in identifying and implementing "results-oriented" subregional cooperation initiatives.
UNCDF’s MicroLead program team is proud to introduce its series of practical toolkits titled, "How to Succeed in Your Digital Journey: a Series of Toolkits for Financial Service Providers”. The toolkits (available both in French and English) are designed for financial service providers (FSPs) who want to go digital.
Bank of Sierra Leone launched the Digital Financial Services (DFS) Working Group, one of the six working groups under the National Strategy for Financial Inclusion 2017 – 2020 that will deliver on the digital delivery of financial services. Chairing the maiden meeting of the DFS Working Group, Governor Dr Marah challenged the industry to use this platform to unlock the tremendous opportunity that DFS can bring to Sierra Leoneans who cannot access financial services and/or need capital for their businesses.