SPAIN: According to ‘Unlocking the Potential: Women and Mobile Financial Services in Emerging Markets’, a study released by GSMA mWomen Programme and Visa Inc. today at the Mobile World Congress, women in the developing countries represent a significant underserved market and commercial opportunity for mobile financial service providers. The study found majority of women are lacking of access to basic financial services and often face an additional burden of having primary responsibility for managing the household finances. They must overcome numerous challenges such as low-income, irregular and unpredictable, and formal financial tools hard to access in managing their finances.
Other key findings from the report are:
- Women actively contribute to household income – 75 per cent of women surveyed contribute some amount of income, most often from irregular sources like small businesses or agricultural sales;
- Women use a variety of tools to manage household finances – Nearly 60 per cent of women surveyed are saving money for daily expenses and long-term needs and a full one-third pay the family’s utility bills or make other types of remittances; and
- Women recognise the security and privacy of mobile money – In Kenya, for example, 95 per cent of women using mobile remittances rated them as secure and private. In comparison, only roughly half of those using personal delivery of cash as their primary method consider it secure and private.