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n Development Finance Agenda (DEFA) - Winners and losers on the road to financial inclusion
Two global transformations are creating enormous opportunities to provide financial services to people who have previously been financially excluded. First, major segments of the world's population are moving from poverty to form an enormous "vulnerable" class, living on 4 to 10 U.S. dollars a day, who for the first time have some discretionary income and can become viable banking customers. Second, technology is making it easier and cheaper to reach these groups. According to the Financial Inclusion 2020 project at the Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion, there is much to gain here, and the winners will be those who adequately recognize and respond to the opportunity. Financial service providers are challenged to understand the profound ways in which these populations differ from familiar middle class customers. Governments are challenged to ensure that inclusion occurs within an orderly marketplace with vulnerable consumers protected. Both governments and providers have responsibilities to ensure that new users gain the competencies needed to handle their new financial tools wisely.
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