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Showing posts from September, 2012

Making the case for Financial Literacy – Understanding and Addressing Challenges (PART 1)

Author: Mudita Tiwari

We begin the Financial Literacy Education or FE series from today. Based on the latest findings from our on-going studies in the field of financial literacy and its impact on the financial behaviour of people.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) initiated the ‘National Pilot Project for Financial Inclusion Plan’ (NPPFI) in 2005 and recommended that 25% of all the new bank accounts must be opened in currently unbanked areas in a year, and provide financial services and products to at least 50% of the financially excluded households. The RBI invited private banks to work with Non-Governmental Institutions (NGOs) and SHGs, and also public banks, to provide at least No-Frills Accounts (NFAs), and use solutions like the Banking Correspondents (BC) and mobile banking to increase their coverage. Yet, reaching these customers has been difficult for banks – customers in unbanked areas are hard to reach physically, have limited collateral or savings to open bank accounts, or hav…

Business Correspondent might help but do they know about it?

Access to financial service is important can be verified by this simple story of Santosh. When he migrated to Delhi, he had no bank account. He was lucky that that his landlord helped him open a bank account. He started depositing his and other unbanked migrant friends’ savings in his account. In a few years time, he took a loan from the bank and bought a truck. Today he is an owner of two trucks.
Every poor migrant comes to big cities hoping to achieve what Santosh achieved. However, many fail due to lack of proper access to financial services. I am not arguing that having a bank account can do wonders for the poor; however, having no access to formal financial system can definitely worsen the situation of the poor. Rajveer- another poor migrant in Delhi- has a voter’s id from his village and has been trying to open a bank account. However, his application is rejected because he is not able to provide local proof of address and a local introducer (someone who already has a bank accoun…

Business Training: helping hand to the poor?

One must be familiar with the adage, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” Would this adage apply to the attempt in training the rural poor in entrepreneurship? The aspect of enhancing the livelihoods of the poor especially the rural population is of utmost importance but would a helping hand fasten the rate of progress?
CMF has been involved in several studies of which business training is a prominent feature. How a study or intervention programme perceives the phrase, "business training" does play a vital role in how it is rolled out in the end. A fact sheet detailing specific CMF studies from the past as well as ongoing studies throws light on the various factors that affect the role of business training at large. For more information, check out our fact sheet library in our website. Link

Debunking Remittances - Global and Indian perspectives

Recently, a colleague shared this link with me, which shows the flow of money on a global basis owing to remittances. The visualization though a little cramped still makes interesting viewing. Click on India, you will find the country in the South-East direction of the pie-chart and see how the money transfer happens. It is interesting to note, if you thought the Middle East was likely to be the number one destination in terms of sending money back, you will be surprised. There is competition. Here is the link: Quite a tool indeed, developed by Roxana Torre. You get to see how much money is received and sent from each country. Eye in the Sky feeling?