The final reports on three systematic reviews have undergone review and have been published on the website of the Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre). The three systematic reviews focused on ICTs & MSMEs, ICTs & education and ICTs and mobile financial services were funded by IDRC and DFID. The links to the final reports are given below. The impact of mobile financial services in low- and lower-middle-income countries Strategies for training or supporting teachers to integrate technology into the classroom Does access to business-relevant information through networked devices enhance the internal effciency and business growth of urban MSMEs in low- and middle- income countries?
It is a lot of pain, but it seems the demonetization is going to make India a leader in m-financial services. Across the country, about 70,000 merchants a day are signing up for India’s best-selling mobile payments platform, Paytm, about 14 times as many as the daily average before the currency decision, said Vijay Shekhar Sharma, founder and chief executive of Paytm and One97 Communications, the start-up behind it. Since the large-currency ban, the number of daily transactions on Paytm has grown to nearly six million, an increase of 350 percent, and the service is adding half a million users each day, Mr. Sharma said. “Earlier, we were the innovator, now we are the mainstream,” he said.
The results of the systematic review on the impact of mobile financial services in low- and lower middle-income countries were disseminated on 17 June 2016 at the Microtel Libis in Quezon City, Philippines. Dr. Erwin Alampay, who led the systematic review team, shared the results of the study that showed significantly higher volumes of remittances being received by m-financial service users compared to non-users. The slides can be accessed here. The event was also used as a platform to discuss the status of and issues pertaining to mobile money in the Philippines at large.
A significant contribution to the m-money debate has been made by Chanuka Wattegama, until last month LIRNEasia’s Senior Research Manager and the person responsible for managing the Mobile 2.0 research module. The tightly argued piece contains many references to LIRNEasia work and is a perfect example of the success of LIRNEasia’s catalytic role. Worth reading in full by anyone interested in the subject. Ours is an anxious society that expects the protection of every electronic money transfer by the financial regulator.
Much has been written about Kenya’s m-money system. Here the Economist highlights a Gates Foundation paper that highlights an aspect that has not been much written about, the need to balance e money and real money in the hands of the retailers. There are many elements to a successful mobile-money scheme: the right technology, simple marketing, partnerships with banks, support from regulators. But keeping it all going are people like Gaudencia, moving bundles of cash around, on buses and in vans, behind the scenes.
Colloquium conducted by Dr. Erwin Alampay of NCPAG, Philippines. Presentation began by looking at the potential for M-money. Why should we use m-money? Improving efficiency: Improve services, financial services.