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GSMA and Visa Collaborate to Promote Financial Inclusion



GSMA and Visa Collaborate to Promote Financial Inclusion

Visa and the GSMA Mobile for Development Foundation have partnered to increase financial inclusion.

According to Visa, on Monday, February 26, the recently unveiled Digital Finance for All (DFA) Initiative aims to assist 20 million people in low- and middle-income countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. These people include women, small-holder farmers (SHFs), and owners of nano, micro, and small enterprises (NMSEs).

“While digital payments use by adults in low- and middle-income countries is up 66% from 2014, women, SHFs, NMSE owners, and globally displaced individuals continue to face barriers accessing the digital economy,” the company said in a news release.

“Women in low- and middle-income countries are 20% less likely than men to hold a formal financial account and more than 30% of the world’s food is produced by SHFs yet most have limited or no access to formal financial services like credit, loans, savings, or insurance,” Visa said. 

The press release states that the DFA’s goals are to increase financial literacy, conduct research on financial inclusion, and digitize NMSEs and SHFs to facilitate their adoption of digital financial services and promote their success.

“Mobile money can play a transformative role in advancing financial inclusion and resilience for the nearly 2 billion people who remain unbanked globally,” said Ashley Olson Onyango, Head of Financial Inclusion and AgriTech, GSMA. “However, poor digital and financial literacy is a key barrier to accessing digital financial services, especially for certain population segments like women, farmers and micro-merchants.”

Financial inclusion has been one of the outcomes of the massive digital shift, especially in emerging markets, as PYMNTS reported last month.

For example, in an interview with PYMNTS CEO Karen Webster, Mario Shiliashki, CEO of PayU Global Payments, stated that Latin America presents a significant opportunity for financial inclusion for smaller businesses.

“More than 60% of these 5 million small businesses in Colombia have inadequate or no real access to financial services,” Shiliashki said.

He declared that PayU can assist client companies in managing their operations more smoothly and gaining access to capital by offering financial services to SMBs.

Meanwhile, American businesses are not blind to the allure of updated banking services and a larger customer base for providing them. 75% of small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) facing financial stress are most likely to use a digital-only bank as their primary financial institution, according to joint research by PYMNTS Intelligence and NCR.

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