Forum of Industry and Academic Knowledge Sharing (FIAKS), a global knowledge-sharing platform, held its 3rd edition of Leadership Conclave virtually. Thought leaders from the financial sector, mainly comprising C-suite executives and industry experts, emphasized financial inclusion as one of the foundations of a developing economy. There still exists both a great need and the potential to tap into this unbanked population and bring them into the financial net.
Mr. Ketan Doshi – Managing Director PayPoint India
Mr. Ketan Doshi, Managing Director of PayPoint India, said, “A banking correspondent has to give a comprehensive service at a single point, for which the entire banking ecosystem has to come together to bring complete financial inclusion to the last mile. But as per regulations, customer service points (CSPs) are currently not allowed to partner with multiple banks. So, people are stuck with one bank’s services in a rural location with say under 1000 population.”
He further added, “There is a regulation requiring all Banking Mitras to undergo an IIBF training program to operate as a CSP point. But for certain BC outlets, obtaining this would be challenging, as even a paanwala is a grocery shop and is a potential BC operator for financial inclusion.”
Ms. Ashu Suyash, Entrepreneur and Independent Director (former MD and CEO CRISIL) stated, “There has been spectacular growth in the opening of bank accounts and deposits. But beyond that, when we look at access to credit, health insurance or life insurance coverage, or the pension scheme that the government launched, the uptake has been low. So, the first wave of progress has already happened, but we now need the second wave of progress. India is clearly becoming a digital economy, and that should allow us to track metrics better.”
Mr. Amit Bhatia, Managing Director, and Head – International Private Bank of Deutsche Bank (India), said, “Rapid digitalization in India’s financial sector has not only led to the availability of data in real-time but has also made processes much smoother. With the easy availability of accurate information on industry segments and clusters, it is easier for banks to make more informed decisions.”
In the last decade, India has made a lot of progress due to the major banking and economic reforms. But issues like last-mile connectivity of banks and other financial institutions, access to credit, dormant accounts, and others remain. The discussions were moderated by Vikas R Panditrao, Co-founder of FIAKS.
Ms. Anuradha Panditrao, Founder – FIAKS, spoke about how the platform is turning out to be disruptive learning and development initiative. She mentioned that several organizations from the BFSI sector and large technology companies are enrolling for it, with PayPoint India being the first banking correspondent to partner.