Mobile banking promoted for the disadvantaged in Vietnam

10:45 | 24/08/2018 Finance - Banking

(VEN) - Vietnam is aiming for comprehensive financial development for the poor and women, a goal supported by developed countries and international organizations. One such project is a mobile banking service designed to improve access by disadvantaged people, implemented in cooperation between the Vietnam Bank of Social Polices, MasterCard and the Asian Foundation. The Australian government’s Business Partnerships Platform also supports the project.

mobile banking promoted for the disadvantaged in vietnam

Ha Hai An, deputy director of the International Cooperation Department under the State Bank of Vietnam, told participants at a workshop on mobile banking for the poor and women in Vietnam that the project aims to increase access to a full range of financial services for low-income households, especially women-led micro-enterprises that lack access to traditional banking services. The workshop was held jointly by the State Bank of Vietnam, the Vietnam Bank of Social Polices and the Vietnam Microfinance Working Group, sponsored by the Australian Aid and the Asian Foundation.

Justin Baguley, counselor at Economic and Development Cooperation at the Australian Embassy in Vietnam, said there are a number of mobile/digital banking models applied and deployed successfully in the world. In Vietnam, mobile/digital banking is also a trend and has been adopted by banks to provide a better experience for urban clients as well as the disadvantaged. However, the service presents a number of challenges, such as data leakage and online fraud.

In recent times, the banking sector in general and the Vietnam Bank of Social Polices in particular have implemented credit programs to help the poor and other beneficiaries to conveniently access capital, contributing to sustainable poverty reduction, ensuring social security, improving living conditions, and affecting a strong and comprehensive transformation in poor areas. One of the services being implemented by the Vietnam Bank of Social Policies and attracting the interest of customers is the SMS service.

The SMS service has been implemented in all the 63 cities and provinces nationwide since 2016. The service has helped save time and costs for both customers and banks, as well as helped households regularly get updates on loans, such as payment deadlines and term deposits through texts on their mobiles. Luu Thi Thao, deputy director of the Center for

Information and Technology under the Vietnam Bank for Social Policies, said the SMS service is identified as one of the effective tools to help poor households get acquainted with digital technologies, helping the bank diversify its products and services, and improving its operational efficiency.

Duy Minh