IN the Philippines, a land of immense potential, a critical issue lies at the heart of its economic future: 44 percent of the bankable population, those ages 15 and older, remains unbanked. This statistic is not just a number; it’s a glaring indicator of untapped economic potential. Financial inclusion, or strategically integrating these individuals into the financial system, emerges as a beacon of transformative potential. The Philippines, with its vibrant culture and robust natural resources, has always been a country poised for economic breakthroughs. Despite impressive GDP growth rates and a decrease in poverty levels in recent years, challenges such as income inequality and limited access to financial services persist. This backdrop underscores financial inclusion’s vital role in fostering economic development. The financial history of the Philippines is marked by a journey from a tightly controlled banking system to a more liberalized financial environment in the 1990s. Tracing the evolution of this landscape illuminates the barriers to financial inclusivity and highlights the strides made so far. This historical context is crucial for understanding the current challenges and the steps needed to foster a more inclusive financial future. This article aims to equip leaders with insights into leveraging financial inclusion to spur growth, drawing lessons from global models and adapting them to the Filipino context. India’s example: A model for the Philippines Register to read this story and more for free . Signing up for an account helps us improve your browsing experience. OR See our subscription options.

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