Mastercard announced on Thursday an alliance with five leading financial services and technology companies in Latin America to accelerate digital and financial inclusion in a region where almost half of the adult population is unbanked.
“It is an unprecedented private sector agreement,” Kiki del Valle, Senior Vice President, Digital Partnerships, Mastercard Latin America and Caribbean, told Efe in reference to the “Tech for Good Partnership” alliance stemming from the company’s long-standing commitment to financial inclusion.
Del Valle said the multinational is guided by its principle that “doing good has positive results for business,” and added that she believed financial inclusion benefits society, as it strengthens the formal economy and creates job opportunities.
“Technology has the power to change the reality of millions of people and companies that are not prepared to face current challenges,” said Carlo Enrico, president of Mastercard Latin America and the Caribbean.
Enrico stressed the importance of uniting “the best minds, resources and efforts with a singular focus: to build an inclusive economy in the region. This can be a game changer for many.”
Mastercard sought this joint effort with Bancolombia, Banco Galicia and Citibanamex, and the fintech companies Mercado Libre and PayPal, aware that the private sector needs to and can do more to drive innovation for those outside the financial system.
They will pool their technology and knowledge so that no one is left behind in the digital economy, said Del Valle.
It also frees thousands of people from having to rely on non-formal moneylenders and remittance services, she added.
According to data from 2017, 45% of the Latin American adult population, which is equivalent to 200 or 220 million people, did not have bank accounts.
Only Africa has a lower bankarization rate.
AN ALLIANCE FOR GOOD
Although it has its own independent entity, the