Bill Gates: Mobile is the key to global financial inclusion

Bill Gates: Mobile is the key to global financial inclusion

With philanthropy on the rise among the world’s notable entrepreneurs, attention is centered on enabling those in developing countries to escape poverty through access to formal financial services, and better health care.

In a recent interview, Bill Gates discusses how mobile money will benefit financial inclusion in India.

“The only way to move small amounts of money with very low fees is when no humans are involved… we decided that accelerating the digitization of the finance system—some would say put it on a mobile phone— that’s the only way we would get really low transaction fees.”

Additionally, global leaders have stated that financial inclusion will feature prominently in future agendas.

At last year’s United Nations Sustainable Development Summit, discussed here in an earlier post, financial inclusion was emphasised as a means to achieve many goals over the coming years. Issues such as zero hunger, gender equality, and no poverty, to name just a few, all prompted questions about the huge role to play for mobile money in their attainment. As former New Zealand Prime Minister stated at the event:

“Inclusive finance is included in the targets of seven of the 17 goals, as a result of its capacity to reduce poverty, promote food security, enable economic growth and empower women.”

Excitement is brewing particularly in the Indian market, where the government has introduced new regulations for banks and mobile network operators to more easily implement services where they are most needed. Payments banks are bridging the gaps between the two institutions making it more viable than ever to offer financial services to those previously considered as unreachable.

On his blog, Bill Gates sums up the importance of investment in this area.

“In the next 15 years, digital banking will give the poor more control over their assets and help them transform their lives. The key to this will be mobile phones. “

Image: Flickr/ AMISOM Public Information

Leave a Reply

Close Menu