20 June 2013

Pacific Economic Monitor

The economic prospects are still bright for the Pacific region this year and next even as inflation ticks up, says Asian Development Bank Senior Economist, Christopher Edmonds.

18 June 2013

PNG Bank credits Microfinance Expansion Project as village women secure first loans

Post Courier, Port Moresby, 19 June 2013

Co-financed by Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) and the Government of PNG, the Microfinance Expansion Project is a comprehensive development approach designed to strengthen the growth of the microfinance sector in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Launched in ApriI, 2012, MEP is designed to take forward the learning and initiatives of the previous project - PNG Microfinance and Employment Project (2002 to 2010).
Only approximately 15% of the population of PNG presently having access to financial services. Availability of natural resources, untapped opportunities and economic changes that the country is undergoing offers potential for expansion of the microfinance sector. However the opportunity comes with challenges of low literacy levels, absence of good infrastructure and limited scope for promotion of micro enterprise.
MEP is designed to address these challenges and takes the onus of strengthening the sector and expanding its outreach to remote parts of the country. FIND OUT MORE

5 June 2013

PSDI briefs Timor-Leste officials on branchless banking

Dili, Timor-Leste, 5 June 2013 – ADB hosted a briefing for representatives of the Government of Timor-Leste on 5 June 2013, outlining the opportunities and challenges presented by branchless banking initiatives in the country. Conducted with the Inclusive Finance for the Underserved Economy (INFUSE) programme, the briefing presented findings of a PSDI-funded assessment and INFUSE-funded market research in 2011/2012. The briefing was attended by the Minister for Social Solidarity, representatives of the Central Bank of Timor-Leste and other stakeholders. Participants discussed the findings of the assessment and recommended policy responses by the Government. There are challenges to developing branchless banking services in Timor-Leste, but also recent positive developments, including (i) the introduction of  new and improved mobile telecommunications services and (ii) increased interest of commercial banks in upgrading their banking infrastructure to enable branchless banking services.

Download the presentation and brief summary of the assessment:
  • ADB: Branchless Banking Assessment - Findings - June 2013  | http://bit.ly/103RnWf
  • Branchless Banking in Timor-Leste  | http://bit.ly/12UskZn