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CGAP: Policy needs a balanced approach to mobile banking and other technologies

Jim Rosenberg's picture

A new CGAP/DFID paper addresses the policy implications of branchless banking. Regulating Transformational Branchless Banking: Mobile Phones and Other Technology to Increase Access to Finance is based on assessments of policy and regulation in seven key countries, including interviews with more than 500 people from governments, the private sector, and international organizations in Brazil, India, Kenya, Pakistan, the Philippines, Russia and South Africa.

While much of the current buzz is around mobile phones, other branchless banking applications are gaining traction as well. Brazil's increase in access to finance has been accomplished largely through the more than 95,000 banking "correspondents"—local merchants and post offices that act as agents for banks, equipped with card-swipe and barcode-reading point-of-sale (POS) terminals. In Russia, a broad network of bank ATMs, POS terminals, and online e-money providers offer transaction services outside of traditional branch offices.

Want to know more? Read the full report and access country-by-country information.

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