For nearly a decade, the international community and the governments are making joint efforts to develop financial inclusion. The challenge is to set up an accessible financial system while encouraging stability as well as fairness, in order to achieve financial universal access by 2020. The goal is to successfully increase to one billion world-wide, the number of new bank account holders.
Access to financial services
Access to financial services is not an end in itself. What is important is that these services be utilised. The issue of financial inclusion is not so much to own a bank account but to use it to escape poverty, to deal with contingencies and have a better life. Created in Kenya, mobile money service is a proven example. Indeed, today more than 70% of Kenyans use their cell phone to perform financial operations.
The importance of innovation
New technologies will improve optical character recognition and lower the cost of financial services. In addition, expect that the innovation in the sector will alter the shape of the value chain of financial services in the future. As a result, many countries have already establishef national strategies for financial inclusion knowing that it can strengthen the economy, reduce inequalities and help millions of people out of poverty.
What have we learned?
Financial inclusion has significantly progressed in the world since its implementation , and millions of people today have the opportunity to live better lived. However, organizations must continue to work together to ensure that the number of people with bank accounts continues to increase., According to new data from the Global Findex database (The World Bank), progress to date has been uneven because women, the poor and the unemployed are still largely excluded. For instance, 65% of women today have an account, compared with 58% in 2014, but the gender gap remains at 9% in developing countries. In Bangladesh, where 36% of women hold an account, as opposed to 65% for men, a 29% difference. In Pakistan, a man is five times more likely than a woman to open a bank account. To better address these inequalities, one needs to better determine the needs of women and what they expect from financial services offered.
Source: World Bank