Digital Financial Services: Regulating for Financial Inclusion

An ICT Perspective

image of Digital Financial Services: Regulating for Financial Inclusion

This report sheds light on some of the most important issues that policy makers and regulators face in accelerating the spread of mobile financial services, while ensuring that the market develops competitively. It focuses on the regulatory and competition issues that have most at stake and are the most pressing. In doing so, the report aims to help regulators support the key contribution of ICT to digital financial inclusion using mobile networks, introducing those that are unbanked and underbanked into the digital economy.



Executive summary

Mobile financial services have become an important driver of financial inclusion in a growing number of countries. Where banks traditionally did not reach populations, the rapid growth of mobile networks and subscriptions has offered a distribution technology for mobile financial services. Between 2011 and 2014, 700 million adults worldwide became account holders and the number of adults with no account dropped by 20 per cent to 2 billion. The number of mobile money accounts reached 411 million globally in 2015, a third up from 2014. Mobile money is today available in 93 countries.


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