IAMAI’s symposium on Financial Inclusion through Mobile phones emphasized on the needs of progressive policies and strong partnerships between Telecom service providers, Banks and technology enablers.
New Delhi, 9th October, 2009: With an objective to highlight the mobile phone utility and the next level of mobile telephony, Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), today organized a national symposium on financial inclusion through mobile phones.
With nearly 440 million subscribers, mobile phones cover nearly 40% of the country’s population. Given the unprecedented coverage, mobile phones are increasingly been seen as agents of socio-economic development – reaching out opportunities to people and places way beyond any other instrument.
“Financial Inclusion and penetration of organized banking among the rural Indian population is a key priority area for an all inclusive growth. There is a huge opportunity in terms of further improving existing set of methodologies for financial transactions. Mobile phones fit into the picture so well, as they could take the financial inclusion initiative to the next level. Mobile payments or financial transactions through mobile devices carry huge importance and relevance for the Indian banking scenario. Government have understood it’s potential and working very aggressively towards enabling this system as penetrative as possible,” said Mr R Chandrashekhar, Secretary, Department of Information Technology, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Government of India while delivering a special address at the event.
Mr Chandrashekhar also highlighted, “RBI has issued a detailed set of guidelines for the mobile payment transactions. This is an initial step towards recognizing mobile phones in the financial inclusion and I also see this step as a flavour-setting trend that indicates mobile payments scope in the Indian market.”
Sanjay Swamy, Chief Executive Officer of mCheck commented, “Mobile is a safest platform for financial transactions. At the backend, extremely robust technology takes care of the financial transactions. All is required is to have a well guided awareness strategy at the end user level.”
Commenting on the overall market scenario, Anil Pande, Head Product Development Management, Reliance Communications said, “Technology is very much available, mobile penetration is also extremely impressive, banking or finance related institutions are willing to collaborate and telecom service providers are also keen on coming closer for the sake of financial inclusion. This is a very healthy sign, especially when mobile subscribers are higher in number as compared to banking customers.”
Today we have the technology to deliver financial services to the remotest parts of the country; but technology by itself cannot guarantee the success of what is essentially a socio-economic process. Financial inclusion is the key to socio-economic development and it was a matter of time that people would start talking about and thinking about “marrying” financial inclusion with mobile phones.
The Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) is a not-for-profit industry body registered under the Societies Act, 1896. Its mandate is to expand and enhance the online and mobile value added services sectors. It is dedicated to presenting a unified voice of the businesses it represents to the government, investors, consumers and other stakeholders. The association addresses the issues, concerns and challenges of the Internet and Mobile economy and takes a leading role in its development.