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Mexico joins Better Than Cash Alliance

24 June 2016  |  6645 views  |  0 Man holding smartphone

Mexico has become the latest country to join the UN-based Better Than Cash Alliance as it bids to accelerate the country's migration to digital payments as part of the government's financial inclusion strategy.

Mexico recently unveiled a national policy on financial inclusion that included a call for the country to use technology to reduce its reliance on cash as a way to propel inclusive growth, empower women and grow GDP.

The Better Than Cash Alliance says that its research shows that just by digitising its own payments, the Mexican government can save around $1.3 billion a year.

For citizens, the group is hoping to harness the popularity of mobile phones. While only 44% of Mexican adults have bank accounts, 107 million of the 120 million people in the country have handsets.

Luis Videgaray Caso, Mexico's Minister of Finance and Public Credit, says: "There is a tremendous opportunity for financial inclusion in front of us that we must seize to build on the momentum of the new National Policy on Financial Inclusion. Integrating digital payment technology across all agencies of Government is key to this, and the other benefits of efficiency and cost savings, are too valuable to ignore."

Mexico joins the likes of India and Rwanda in joining the The Better Than Cash Alliance, which was set up in 2012 by a group of development organisations, foundations and private companies, including Citi and Visa, to lobby for a shift towards electronic payments in the fight against global poverty.

The group argues that moving to e-money has the potential to advance financial inclusion and help people build savings while giving governments, development organisations, and companies a more cost-effective, efficient, transparent, and safer means of disbursing and collecting payments.

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