PFIP released a Regulatory Handbook on Digital Financial Services (DFS), in partnership with Mobile Money for the Poor, the University of New South Wales, and Centre for International Finance and Regulation. The Handbook was launched at a conference in Sydney attended by 78 participants from 20 countries, including governors and other senior representatives of ten central banks.
Recent significant advances in technology and affordability of DFS offers a promising channel to provide access to the formal financial system to the financially underserved, in turn expected to improve living standards and reduce poverty. To harness DFS for financial inclusion, regulation must be supportive of innovation, while also mitigating the risk of customers through consumer protection legislation. The successful regulation of DFS requires a fresh approach from central banks and regulators, requiring them, for instance, to understand the detailed needs and demand of consumers in their country for DFS. The handbook is designed to assist regulators to create enabling environments to allow DFS take-up within their country contexts.
PFIP is now supporting the second phase of the research, which will create country diagnostics for Solomon Islands, PNG and Fiji to implement appropriate policy & regulatory interventions to optimize the contribution of DFS to financial inclusion in the respective country contexts.