Advancing financial inclusion for Indonesian women
By Digital News Asia September 1, 2017
- Will enhance formal networks by creating knowledge and capability exchanges
- Invest in research to understand how to advance financial inclusion, equitable economic growth
COMMONWEALTH Bank and Mastercard announced on Aug 31 a collaboration to better financial inclusion for Indonesian women.
This collaboration under the WISE (Women Investment Series) programme will have three key pillars:
- Enhancing formal networks by creating knowledge and capability exchange among women-owned businesses.
- Innovating with technology through the development of new digital learning tools and expansion of the WISE App to achieve nationwide scale and impact.
- Investing in research to understand how to advance financial inclusion and equitable economic growth throughout Indonesia.
Early in 2017, Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK; Indonesia’s Financial Services Authority) released research showing that Indonesia’s financial literacy and inclusion indices stood at 29.66% and 67.82% respectively.
OJK called upon the financial services industry to promote and implement financial literacy and inclusion programmes to achieve their target of 75% for the financial inclusion index by 2019.
“I am excited for our collaboration with Mastercard as both companies have an ongoing commitment to Indonesia, and helping the Indonesian government realise financial inclusion and financial literacy index targets”, says Commonwealth Bank Indonesia president director Lauren Sulistiawati.
“At Commonwealth Bank, we believe that by enhancing awareness of and access to financial services, particularly through digital channels, Indonesians will be better equipped to secure their financial wellbeing, hence, advancing the overall Indonesian economy.
“Through our WISE programme, we are particularly focused on Indonesian women as they increasingly have greater financial influence in their personal lives and within the broader local community. Currently, more than 2,500 Indonesian women have joined our WISE face-to-face classes and more than 3,500 people have downloaded our digital platform under WISE Apps to support the finances of the Indonesian women.”
According to the International Finance Corporation, women-owned businesses make up half of the small and medium enterprises in Indonesia and contribute an estimated 9.1% of GDP.
Commonwealth Bank and Mastercard will help drive the growth of women-owned businesses by improving their business acumen, increasing their understanding of financing, and educating them about customer and market trends.
Additionally, Commonwealth Bank and Mastercard will invest in research to continue the conversation about how together we can advance the inclusive and robust growth of the Indonesian economy.
“Financial inclusion is an integral part of Mastercard’s commitment to Indonesia. We believe that unlocking the full potential of women business leaders to expand their companies will result in reduced income inequality while strengthening small and medium enterprises as engines of growth for the Indonesian economy,” says Mastercard Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei division president Safdar Khan.
“I am confident that our work with Commonwealth Bank will grow the economic contribution of small businesses while improving the lives of women entrepreneurs and their families.”
This collaboration is the coming together of like-minded companies with shared vision, values, and long-term commitment to a vibrant and inclusive Indonesian economy.
There will be an increased pace of change and the calibre of resources available to deliver greater financial inclusion outcomes for Indonesian women, especially women entrepreneurs.