Strengthening BC network - RBI's timeline

Posted on April 06, 2016 by Sumita Kale

RBI's First Bi-monthly Monetary Policy Statement, 2016-17 has set out two main tasks for strengthening the BC network: 

The BC model offers significant scope for further strengtheningAccordingly, the following initiatives are proposed:

  1. In order to ensure the competence of BCs and to promote quality delivery of financial services, a graded certification/training programme for BCs is proposed to be introducedThis would enable BCs with a good track record and advanced training to be entrusted with more complex tasks such as handling/delivery of financial products that go beyond deposit and remittanceThe Reserve Bank will issue the necessary framework for establishing a certification programme for BCs by end-June 2016Based on the framework, the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) will be requested to put in place a system of training and certification of BCs in coordination with external training institutes.
  2. In order to have a tracking system of BCs, it is proposed to create a registry covering all BCs, both existing and newThe registration will be online and will capture basic details including location of fixed point BCs, nature of operations and the likeThis database will be updated on a quarterly basisThe necessary enabling framework would be issued by the Reserve Bank by end-June 2016 and the IBA will be requested to put in place a registry of BC agents in consultation with all stakeholders.

One of the key recommendations made by Indicus in Service Quality Standards in Telecom Connectivity for Financial Inclusion Policy Brief November, 2015 was to

Put in place a unified, harmonised database of the financial inclusion footprint, in terms of outlets, service points, devices, connectivity and agent networks, aggregated and monitored by a single source

It is gratifying to note that this recommendation has been picked up by the RBI Committee on Medium Term Path for Financial Inclusion (Recommendation 6.7) and is now being implemented.

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