Financial Inclusion - News and Views - February 2013
The monthly newsletter from the Indicus Centre for Financial Inclusion documents the latest news and views in the financial inclusion space, to provide a knowledge base that will help build understanding around how to accelerate the poor’s access to high-quality financial services.
This month we focus on evolving payment mechanisms that have enabled the transition to cheaper and more efficient transactions; digital payments are a necessary condition for easing access to financial services. Our lead stories include a speech by RBI Executive Director G. Padmanabhan that has raised several issues on the transition from cash to electronic payments and a post by Daniel Radcliffe and Rodger Voorhies on the digital pathway to financial inclusion.
Shri G. Padmanabhan puts down for discussion salient issues in the changing payment systems in India. Many of these issues impact our progress towards universal financial inclusion e.g. changing ingrained consumer behaviour in line with changing technology, managing the role of non-banks in payments, consumer protection in electronic transactions etc.
Daniel Radcliffe and Rodger Voorhies present the four stages through which countries transit as consumers move from cash to an inclusive digital economy. An important insight from their paper is that digital financial inclusion will accelerate only when stakeholders step outside their comfort zones to test new commercial and regulatory models. It is therefore crucial to revisit long-held assumptions in financial regulation, telecommunications, and banking.
Section I: Policy – the latest from India’s policymakers