February 20, 2016
MARK Flaming believes the Pacific Financial Inclusion Program (PFIP) has outperformed its expectations.
Mr Flaming is the new PFIP regional financial inclusion project manager and he
has come into the project with a huge amount of enthusiasm for how the project is set up.
“I think it’s an extraordinarily innovative facility in the broad international industry right now,” he said.
Mr Flaming has a long career developing financial markets, institutions and regulatory frameworks to extend financial services to unserved market segments.
He has worked with policymakers, investors, development finance institutions, supervisors, and service providers.
In recent years, he has worked primarily with implementers that are innovating with technology and design methods to deliver a new experience to financial service customers.
Mr Flaming has a masters degree from Harvard University in international development and he speaks with varying combinations of fluency in Spanish, German, French and Haitian Creole.
He is no stranger to PFIP, having led a consultancy on the assessment of the initial PFIP.
“I was contracted by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) in 2006-2007 at that time to do research in the Pacific.
“UNCDF at that time was conceptualising a program that could support financial inclusion.
“I was part of a team that went around and we looked at the market situation in 2006 and 2007.
“We found that the South Pacific Islands were struggling with the same challenges that had been there since the beginning of time.”
Mr Flaming’s career spans both extensively on the regulatory side of the financial markets as well as actual development of financial services.
“So I bring all that experience in this position and I look forward to making contributions as I can.
“I have a long career in management positions as well as advisory positions, and I have worked in many markets around the world that are geographically complicated or small.”
Mr Flaming has worked in the Caribbean and lived in Haiti for three years where he created microfinance operations.
“I have worked extensively in the South Pacific as well and in the past two and half years, I have been the CEO
bank group that has been developing mass market financial products for customers in eight different countries.
“So I believe I have the kind of experience in the different kind of markets that have many of the same kinds of challenges as the South Pacific.
“On the regulatory side, I have worked at the beginning of the deveopment of microfinance regulation and I have worked at the beginning of digital finance,” he said.
Source: Fiji Times