Bridging financial inclusion in SA’s informal sector
The South African informal sector is a vibrant thread, pulsating with entrepreneurial energy. Valued at almost $10 billion annually and representing 17% of the country’s total employment.
We have launched a COVID-19 Tracker, The survey themes include health and risk behaviours, food security, income, work and job security, personal safety concerns, and access to government and community support. www.covid19tracker.africa
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By promoting greater access to financial services, FMT helps to ensure that small-scale farmers are empowered to participate in the agricultural economy. Our work in the agricultural sector has been supporting access to markets through supply chain initiatives.
For several years, migrants in the SADC region have been sending funds to loved ones in their country of origin, either for economic or other reasons. Over a decade ago, FMT embarked on its journey to understand cross-border remittances, their value, volumes and pricing in support of migrant needs.
The positive impact of digital financial services on the poor is well documented. Digital financial services solutions are more efficient, cost-effective and accessible than traditional financial services. Yet, evidence indicates that only 27% of SADC citizens access digital financial services.
FMT uses evidence-based frameworks to support the development of financial inclusion strategies for countries. As part of the map process, this involves a demand-side and supply-side data review, analysis of the policies and regulations, and the synthesis of evidence.
Gender equality is fundamental to achieving economic growth and poverty reduction. FMT is committed to accelerating efforts towards gender equality and the empowerment of women. We are mainstreaming gender in our organisational culture, and we are incorporating the perspectives and experiences of both men and women in planning, design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of projects and programmes.
Creating a financial safety net is important for all people. Insurance, when used appropriately, can provide that safety net. FMT’s work focuses on advocacy for the provision of appropriate insurance products and services to promote financial security for everyone.
Research has confirmed that customer due diligence in support of financial integrity (AML/CFT) is a key barrier to supporting the financial inclusion of the most vulnerable. FMT is working to ensure the appropriate and proportionate implementation of risk-based AML/CFT to ensure individuals are not financially excluded.
The Making Access Possible (MAP) diagnostics and roadmaps are rooted in evidence. They identify financial inclusion interventions for supporting financial and economic inclusion and growth. MAP supports the development of financial inclusion and SMME access to finance strategies, and it lays out a vision and implementation framework for financial sector development.
Due to stringent regulations related to business registration, plus the perceived lack of incentives to formalise, informally operating businesses (including new MSMEs) are bound to remain informal traders. FMT’s MSME formalisation programmes are aimed at creating formalisation pathways for MSMEs to enable them to access formal financial and other support services for their growth and sustainability.
As a market facilitator, FMT identifies blockages in policy and regulation to the enhancement of financial inclusion and inclusivity. We provide support in reviewing these policies and at times rewriting the policy or regulation with the regulator. As expert financial inclusion practitioners, we apply the financial inclusion and inclusivity lens to policy and regulation.
Not only can appropriately structured social protection programmes reduce and prevent poverty and vulnerability, but they can also improve livelihoods and reduce inequality. FMT’s social protection programmes focus on deepening the social development of grant recipients by improving the efficiency of social payments and by increasing returns derived from social payments.
Supplier development is a process that supports local SMEs by deepening the market to which they can sell. This is done by working with both large firms and aggregators, as well as MSMEs (known as suppliers). The aim is to encourage small businesses to meet specific criteria to become a supplier to the larger firms or aggregators. This encourages local employment and production, and products produced as a part of the programme can ultimately be exported abroad and can start to compete on the global stage.
Investing in young people is investing in the future. Currently, the youth is bearing the brunt of sluggish economic growth, high unemployment rates, poverty, and inequality. FinMark Trust is committed to supporting initiatives that prioritise the youth and that focus on empowering them to improve their livelihoods and to participate meaningfully in the economy through entrepreneurship, employment, and skills development.
The FinScope Consumer Survey is uniquely aimed at increasing understanding of the informal financial product/service market.Read more
Gathering data is the easy part. Knowing what to do with it is more complex. Our team of researchers, statisticians and data scientists can analyse FinScope or big data to generate evidence and insights.Read more
The proliferation of mobile devices has presented researchers with an excellent opportunity to rethink the way data is collected.Read more
The data portal hosts multiple public data types and analytical tools that allow stakeholders to compare indicators across countries and jurisdictions.Read more
This geospatial offering supports the centring of financial infrastructure on consumers, as well as using location intelligence to inform key decision areas.Read more