The country’s rural banks were able to lend to over 970,000 new borrowers, disbursed a total of P42 billion, and opened nearly 900,000 new micro deposit accounts under the  Microenterprise Access to Banking Services (MABS), an organization funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

On top of this, mobile banking has reached more than P 16 billion worth of transactions or more than $300 million US Dollars since its introduction in 2006.

Over the last 15 years, the Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines (RBAP), MABS and USAID continuously worked on financial inclusion in the countryside.

MABS was able to conduct extensive and thorough research because of a funding generously provided by the USAID.

Because of this research, MABS was able to analyze the financial situation of Filipinos in the countryside.

MABS clearly pointed out several areas where Filipinos need to expose themselves in terms of financial product consumption.

The organization was able to tap the market of the rural banking industry, which provides financial services in over 2,000 locations in the country, through a partnership with the RBAP.

With sufficient resources form the USAID, MABS and RBAP worked hand in hand to provide financial inclusion in developing areas; innovations such as mobile banking and microinsurance came into the picture.

Low income Filipinos found a way to secure their financial needs and be prepared for unexpected incidents.

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Article lifted from Malaya Business Insight website.