• Tue. May 28th, 2024

Webinar being held to boost financial inclusion in Jamaica | News

With almost two-thirds of micro-enterprises not accepting any form of digital payment and 22.8 per cent of Jamaicans not having a bank account, a push is being made to highlight the importance of financial inclusion to emerging markets, especially in the Caribbean.

Phoenix International, which is a division of MC Systems Limited, is partnering with Microsoft and TD Synnex to host a webinar on the issue on Wednesday, March 13, at 10:00 a.m.

The webinar will take the form of a panel discussion featuring regional financial technology specialists Dmitri Dawkins, Commercial Director, Phoenix International; Kamal Aburri, Director, Customer Success- Microsoft;  Gillian Jackson, Senior Manager, Data Analytics, The Jamaica National Group; and a representative from the Inter-American Development Bank.

Dr Dana Morris Dixon, Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister with direct oversight for Skills and Digital Transformation, will also speak at the event.

“A Bank of Jamaica report released in January 2024, titled ‘National Financial Inclusion–Demand Side Study Final Report’, revealed that almost 66.4 per cent of microenterprises surveyed did not accept any digital payment method and more than 22.8 per cent of Jamaicans did not have a bank account,” said Dawkins.

He further explained that this local trend aligns with the rest of the Caribbean region, which exhibits a slower rate of financial inclusion and fintech adoption than Latin America, even with relatively equal access to financial technology resources.

“For instance, the percentage of adults with bank accounts remains significantly lower in the Caribbean than in many Latin American countries.  The Caribbean has seen an increase in fintech solutions brought to market, but the adoption is still notably less than in major Latin American countries. This lag suggests a lack of consumer trust in digital finance or access to these products, may play a key role in hindering the Caribbean’s progress in these areas,” Dawkins said.

The conversation will focus on how fintech drives financial inclusion in emerging markets, emphasising topics including the efficiency of banking on the cloud, AI in core banking, and the significance of financial inclusion to the Caribbean and Latin American economies.

“These concerns are relevant because of the high operating costs for financial service providers in the Caribbean. Investing in operating efficiency can help institutions unlock financial stability and economic opportunities for those currently underserved. Driving increased revenues and profits in the future while reducing operating risks for most industries.  As a result, strategies for increasing consumer trust in fintech products and how they may contribute to financial inclusion will be emphasised,” Dawkins explained.

Interested attendees can register for this free session at  https://iteneri.com/mcsystems/virtual/event/token-authentication.    

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