1) How has IPPB improved financial inclusion in India through a differentiated banking approach?
India Post Payments Bank is one of India’s most successful payments banks. Its collaboration model created a positive impact on bridging the financial inclusion gap. This blog offers lessons for financial institutions worldwide that wish to build robust strategies, launch new lines of pro-poor products, and unlock efficiencies in distribution through capacity-building initiatives.
2) The evolution of payments in India—the state of play
In recent years, India has moved to a leading position in digital payments and developed an ecosystem that enables the uptake and usage of digital payments. Many countries now seek to replicate India’s payments systems, particularly the Unified Payments Interface (UPI). This blog highlights the evolution of India’s payments landscape and looks into issues and ideas that contributed to this evolution.
3) Credit for low- and moderate-income people in Bangladesh—can new-age banks and FinTechs deliver the regulator’s wish?
The waves of digitization and technological advancements in Bangladesh encouraged 60% of the country’s population to open MFS accounts. The country now boasts more than 1.1 million agents. Despite the widespread use of MFS and internet access, only 9.1% of people access the formal credit system. This blog shows how digital credit can be a stepping stone in Bangladesh due to the lower cost of digital credit delivery, combined with the mass digital readiness of consumers.
4) They deliver, they survive, and finally, they BELONG—Blue-collar workers in India are now “Entitled” to what they deserve for their services
India has more than 250 million blue-collared employees who need essential benefits. The startup Entitled works with employers to strengthen their financial health by designing bundled financial products, such as credit and insurance, for the well-being of blue-collared workers. Solid financial health will give these workers a blanket during financial shocks. Entitled is gradually developing innovative delivery channels and products to enrich the user onboarding experience.
5) “Train me like this”: Lessons from the pilot on IIBF BC/BF certification
Between 2012 and 2021, only 62% of approximately 300,000 agents, who appeared for the IIBF BC/BF exam, passed the exam. This blog closely examines the challenges BC agents face in passing the IIBF BC/BF exam. It also offers suggestions to policymakers on graded certifications based on the type of services the BCs provide.
6) Putting India’s demographic dividend to work: Skill development for a digital economy
India sees 13 million young people joining the workforce every year. Yet many fail to get employment. Overwhelmingly, 70% of the workforce is still engaged in the informal sector, which does not provide job benefits, such as the safety of tenure or a social safety net. In this blog, we discuss the need to expand the current skilling architecture in India to help youth thrive in the digital economy. The blog also offers specific recommendations on its implementation.
7) Do young entrepreneurs need new skills in a rapidly evolving digital world?
Lockdowns and restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic increased the usage of digital technology and tools across the globe. This blog discusses the importance of developing digital skills for youth to thrive in today’s digital world. We also outline the critical steps to be followed during digital skills training to increase its practical applicability.
8) Jumpstarting the savings journey for low- and moderate-income people in Vietnam
Saving after managing expenses remains a priority for people from the LMI segment in Vietnam who aspire to lead a better life, absorb income shocks, and strengthen their financial resilience. However, formal savings remain a challenge, particularly in rural areas. In this blog, MSC proposes a three-pronged approach to foster small savings for LMI people in Vietnam using technology, smart product design, and innovative distribution platforms.
9) Could 2022 be the watershed moment for the CICO networks in Indonesia?
In 2014, Indonesian policymakers passed regulations for branchless banking. The regulations gave impetus to the CICO networks as a last-mile delivery channel for financial access. This blog looks at crucial changes and implications of the new draft amendments to the branchless banking regulations released by OJK in 2021.
10) A fine-tuned approach to digital platform design and development in Africa—Part I
This blog is the first of a two-blog series examining the JobTech market in Africa. In this series, we explore the growth of digital platforms and look at constraints to sustainability. The blog offers recommendations on building platforms in informal economies and explores systemic constraints that hinder the sustainability and scalability of job-matching platforms in Africa.
Read more publications from our work in 2022 here.