In collaboration with the Central Bank of Liberia (CLB), the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) programme Mobile Money for the Poor (MM4P) is launching today a national Working Group on Digital Financial Services (DFS) with the primary objective of providing a platform for collaboration among the different players in accelerating the development of the digital financial services ecosystem in Liberi
Digital financial services have made tremendous inroads in expanding savings services to the “last mile” of women in remote, rural areas. But what do financial service providers do if the mobile infrastructure and take-up hasn’t reached critical mass yet?
Over 69 percent1 of the 54 million2 people in Myanmar have no access to grid electricity. Where modern energy services are unavailable, people resort to expensive and unsustainable systems exacerbating energy insecurity and leave communities more vulnerable to the effects of poverty.
Most non-bank financial institutions are relatively good at gathering information about their clients’ transactions. But savings and loan transaction data often doesn’t capture the positive and negative experiences clients face when dealing with a financial institution. If financial institutions don’t understand these challenges, how can they improve their products and services and improve the client experience?
Client Journey Mapping (CJM) is one response to this dilemma.
Mobile Money for the Poor (MM4P) Uganda Technical Specialist Amani M’Bale maintains, “Since government and private sector stakeholders have engaged, we have made progress in expanding financial inclusion to those in need.”
Ms. M’Bale is stepping down from the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) after six years of working to bring financial inclusion to underserved populations in least developed countries in Africa. MM4P spoke with Ms. M’Bale to gather insights about her work on the ground in the MM4P countries of Liberia and Uganda.
Agency banking can be tricky. So this past spring, MicroLead organized a study visit for nine of its partners to NBS Bank in Malawi. NBS has become a model for agency banking. This July, MicroLead held a debriefing webinar for participants of the study visit. Below is a Q&A with two of the webinar participants – Prisca Assimwe of Ugafode in Uganda, and Michael Wiafe of Sinapi Aba in Ghana.
Q1: What is the biggest challenge that agency banking may face in your organization based on what you observed at NBS, and how would you tackle that?
The UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) along with the Financing for Development Office of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) held a two-day Asia expert consultation on municipal finance in least developed countries (LDCs) in the Sukosol Bangkok Hotel on the 5th and 6th of September, 2016.
Digital financial services (DFS) agents play a critical role in customer uptake of DFS in three major ways: agents increase product exposure and connect the product to customer needs; they create a positive initial product experience, helping to eliminate any fear or lack of confidence a customer may feel about using DFS; and they serve as the go-to resource when transaction complications arise.
Studies are underway by Capital Insurance to research unserved markets in Papua New Guinea (PNG), to explore the possibility of providing low-cost insurance specially-designed for currently uninsured properties in informal settlements and villages.
On August 9, MTN Uganda co-launched with the Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) a new service that gives MTN Mobile Money customers the opportunity to save and borrow using their mobile phones.
What makes Mobile Money unique is the accessibility of its services wherever the customer is, across the country and in partner countries. Mobile Money for the Poor (MM4P) has supported MTN since 2014 to make sure that “wherever” would include rural areas. Rural areas in Uganda are home to 84 percent (31 million) of Ugandans and half of whom have low income.