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Delivering Seamless Financial Offerings To Rural Populations: Jake Seltzer, Co-Founder & CEO, Finance Blocks

The role of the platform is to enable immutable recording of all transaction data, ensuring transparency and accountability.

What services does Finance Block provide to Rural Financial Institutions and How is it enabling them to provide seamless financial offerings to the rural population?

To combat these problems in rural economies, Finance Blocks has developed a blockchain-powered product that will serve both RFIs and the unbanked.

-For RFIs, Finance Blocks has a digital platform for managing customer data, recording account activity, verifying identity and credit worthiness seamlessly and securely. This translates into greater productivity and competence for RFIs, which allows them to play a greater role in deploying current financial initiatives.

-For rural consumers, Finance Blocks has an app that allows users to stay updated on the status of their finances and the latest financial products. The app notifies users about account transactions, available balances, and upcoming payments. In the future, the application will enable rural consumers to apply for competitive rural credit opportunities along with a host of other financial services.

What are the loopholes in the rural financial infrastructure which are being merged by the Finance Block? How do you bridge the gap between rural financial lenders and rural populations?

Developed for the purpose of serving both RFIs and rural consumers, Finance Blocks combines revolutionary blockchain technology with banking and credit frameworks to accelerate the process of credit loan sanctions and inspection of documentation while maintaining the highest level of security, transparency and ease of accessibility between lenders and borrowers.

Finance Blocks has separate interfaces for the RFIs and users, designed to serve their needs.

With the Finance Blocks platform and app, providing financial inclusion to the unbanked and helping them achieve upward economic mobility will not be just an abstract idea. It will be turned into a tangible reality when rural users have the right financial tools in their hands and RFIs are empowered with the resources and infrastructure to achieve their aims.

What is the role of blockchain technology to enable rural financial institutions and their users?

Blockchain technology is an integral component of the solution Finance Blocks presents. The role of the platform is to enable immutable recording of all transaction data, ensuring transparency and accountability. This will enhance the efficiency of operations by automating banking processes. The use of a blockchain will also enable RFIs to interact and transact with other members on the Finance Blocks platform in a seamless and secure manner

Along with banking the rural population, the provision of robust digital infrastructure in rural communities will ensure consumers can access information easily. Solutions and financial services such as loans and savings schemes can be correlated, even when there are restrictions on mobility and in-person interactions. This development of digital infrastructure will bring together RFIs and the rural communities in a mutually beneficial relationship. Finance Blocks is aiming to play a transformational role in the development of this process.

What is the vision of Finance Blocks?

Finance Blocks is driven to provide a secure, sustainable, and comprehensive solution aimed at facilitating upward social mobility of rural consumers and enabling RFIs to amplify the reach of their products and services. Our solution utilizes innovative cutting-edge technologies to raise the living standards for the rural population through economic and monetary empowerment in accordance with government financing policies and initiatives.

What are the current stats of financial inclusion worldwide? How do you plan to boost the same? How does Finance Block contribute or encourage financial inclusion?

In 2021, nearly 3.4 billion people currently reside in rural areas, which is 45% of the world’s population. Out of this, nearly 1.7 billion people, accounting for 50% of the rural population, do not have access to basic financial services such as banking. This segment of the population is called “the unbanked”. According to a World Bank report, nearly half of the world’s unbanked population is concentrated in 7 economies.

As per the report, with 225 million unbanked adults, China has 13% of the world’s unbanked population. India, with 190 million unbanked adults, accounts for 11% of the world’s unbanked. Pakistan and Indonesia, with 100 million and 95 million unbanked adults respectively, make up 12% of the world’s population without bank accounts. Nigeria, Mexico and Bangladesh follow on this list with the highest number of adults without access to financial services.

What are the limitations that are encountered by rural financial institutions?

Currently, there are 2 major limitations that are encountered by the RFI’s.

1. RFIs are not digitized which brings the problem of them trying to increase the array of services to their customers. In order to provide services such as UPI payments/digital banking, they need to be digitized.

2. RFI’s business model works in a way that they can only spend money they have. The money these RFI’s have is limited to the FD’s the customers make, but more often than not RFIs have more demands from loans than they can supply. We will be trying to eradicate this problem with our system, to get low-cost credit for the RFI’s to continue increasing their loan book.

What is your opinion on rural financial institutions given a reputation of non-transparency further leading to exuberant fees? How could we expel this?

The RFI’s are what they are, they have been running for 70+ years now, it is not an easy process to ask them to change their ways. We would like to take a step by step approach, and the first step would be to get more insights into them by digitizing them. Although the RFIs may have their limitations/problems, we cannot discount the fact that they have given loans to millions of people in need along the way.

Source: Business World

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