Denpasar, Indonesia IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, together with Bank Sinar Harapan Bali and AXIS, Indonesias fastest-growing mobile operator, launched a mobile-banking project to establish low-cost banking that will help expand access to basic financial services for millions of underserved in Indonesia.
The mobile-banking pilot project is expected to encourage many more people to open bank accounts for the first time by making opening and maintaining an account via mobile phones easy for millions of Indonesians who currently have no access to financial services.
The project will be carried out over 16 months, with an initial focus on building awareness and trust in electronic transactions among the target population. In a second step, Bank Sinar Harapan Bali will introduce the use of mobile phones and other mobile devices for banking transactions, especially in rural areas.
Bank Sinar Harapan Bali is committed to developing mobile banking capabilities to expand our customer base, especially to those in Balis remote villages, said I.B Kade Perdana, President Director of Bank Sinar Harapan Bali. We are pleased to partner with IFC and AXIS, who will assist us in strategy development and provide the technology backbone for the mobile banking service.
Wahyudin Adikusumah, Director Human Resources and Communications of PT Natrindo Selular (AXIS), said, Our vision is to bring the benefits of affordable communications to all Indonesians, access to financial services through the mobile phones can help transform lives. We also see significant growth potential in this emerging marketing, partly because we believe that mobile technology can revolutionize social and economic growth in Indonesia. AXIS is pleased to be partnering with IFC and Bank Sinar to deliver this.
IFCs global experience in developing mobile banking has helped more than 300,000 people in South Africa access banking services at lower costs. Globally, IFC provides investments in innovative payment processors, mobile-money operators, and alongside telecommunications operators and financial institutions involved in payments. IFC also advises mobile-money clients on strategies and products focused on inclusive business, including advisory services on market segmentation and strategy development; agent network development; consumer identification and education; and impact assessment.
Access to basic financial services allows microenterprises and households to better manage their finances, to reduce their vulnerability to shocks and to make investments in their businesses and families, said Adam Sack, IFC Country Manager for Indonesia. Our experience in mobile banking has demonstrated that it offers vast potential to extend the reach of financial services to unbanked populations.