Financial Access 2009 reports on new data from a survey of financial regulators in 139 countries. It is intended for a broad audience of policymakers, researchers, practitioners, and multilateral and bilateral investors.
The report finds that Myanmar’s banking sector so far has found it commercially challenging to extend financial access to the poor. As a result, fewer than 20 people out of 100 have access to formal financial services, with most people relying on family savings or costly alternatives such as informal money lenders.
While many banked people already use mobile banking in China, the country also has the potential to emerge as an important success story for branchless banking and financial inclusion and potentially a new paradigm.
The amount of electronic data generated by computerization—digital data—is growing at unprecedented rates. Financial services are an information business—can this growing wealth of data be harnessed to advance financial inclusion?
Côte d’Ivoire is the largest producer and exporter of cocoa beans and cashew nuts, and a top exporter of coffee and palm oil. Nevertheless, Ivorian smallholder farmers who contribute the most to the agricultural sector are largely neglected by formal financial institutions.
Advances in digital technologies and the increased availability of data can be used to support low-income customers to do more than make payments. These advances can help them to make financial decisions and develop strategies to manage their finances.
Most studies of microfinance programs in Bangladesh indicate that the poor, and especially poor women, have been effectively targeted, and that microfinance programs have been successful in opening up economic opportunities for their clients, increasing access to resources and contributing to their confidence and well-being.