World ac­count

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

past three years, nearly 700 mil­lion adults be­came part of fi­nan­cial in­clu­sion ser­vices around the world, ac­cord­ing to a World Bank re­port. This has brought down the num­ber of un­banked in­di­vid­u­als to 2 bil­lion. Fi­nan­cial in­clu­sion is mea­sured by Global Fin­dex, a World Bank agency, as hav­ing an ac­count that al­lows adults to store money and make or re­ceive elec­tronic pay­ments. It is crit­i­cal to end­ing global poverty. "Ac­cess to fi­nan­cial ser­vices can serve as a bridge out of poverty. We have set a hugely am­bi­tious goal — uni­ver­sal fi­nan­cial ac­cess by 2020—and now we have ev­i­dence that we are mak­ing ma­jor progress," said World Bank Group Pres­i­dent Jim Yong Kim. How­ever, the re­port did not take into ac­count In­dia's ef­fort to fi­nan­cially in­clude 130 mil­lion peo­ple last year. The coun­try's ef­fort started in Au­gust 2014 and went on till Jan­uary 26, 2015. It will be con­sid­ered in the next re­port.

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