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IFC, Microsave Report Supports Increase in Microsavings for India’s Low-Income Clients


In India:
Minakshi Seth
Phone:  +91-11-4111-1058
E-mail:  MSeth@ifc.org

In Washington, D.C.:
Leila F. Search
Phone:  (202) 473 7511
E-mail:  LSearch@ifc.org


New Delhi, India, March 15, 2011—A new report from IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, shows that increasing microsavings is critical to improving access to financial services for low-income clients in India.

The report, Deposit Assessment in India, commissioned by IFC with support from the Netherlands, shows in detail the supply and demand side of microsavings options for poor people in India, where only microcredit is prevalent. It also highlights regulatory and operational challenges and opportunities for financial institutions and mobile banking platforms that want to serve the low-income market.  

An estimated 2.7 billion people lack access to basic formal financial services, including savings accounts, and South Asia has the largest share, 22 percent, of all unbanked people.

“We hope this ground-breaking study will give banks and microfinance institutions new information to help them diversify financial services for low-income households.  Based on the findings, IFC is identifying partner banks and microfinance institutions to help expand their reach and offerings and increase financial inclusion across South Asia,” said Jennifer Isern, Head of IFC’s Access to Finance Advisory Program in South Asia.

“This report is the first comprehensive assessment of savings in India, and it provides exciting and actionable insights for policymakers, bankers, donor agencies, and others committed to financial inclusion,” said Graham Wright, MicroSave’s Director for South Asia.

Tackling financial inclusion in developing countries is a strategic priority for IFC.  Recent developments in the financial sector demonstrate that diversifying products to include deposits, remittances, and insurance is increasingly important to clients and critical to improve their lives.

To learn more about IFC’s Global Microfinance Program and to read the full Deposits Assessments in India report, visit www.ifc.org/microfinance.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $18 billion in fiscal 2010, helping channel capital into developing countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit
wsww.ifc.org.