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Afghan govt joins Better Than Cash Alliance

Afghan govt joins Better Than Cash Alliance

Jan 22, 2013 - 18:11

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): The Afghan government on Tuesday announced joining the Better Than Cash Alliance, promising to transition to electronic payments.

The alliance works with governments, the development community and the private sector to adopt the use of electronic payments and provides resources to those who commit to make the transition.

This is an initiative founded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Citi, Ford Foundation, Omidyar Network, United States Agency for International Development (USAIDinfo-icon), UN Capital Development Fund and Visa Inc.

According to a USAID statement, 2.5 billion adults -- more than a third of the worldinfo-icon’s population -- are currently excluded from the formal financial sector. In the developing world, approximately 80 percent of poor people are excluded.

Electronic payments can bring lasting benefits to people by creating opportunities to access formal financial services and begin to develop assets and save for the future.

“We are pleased to join the Better Than Cash Alliance as a committing member dedicated to making the transition from cash to electronic payments,” said Director General of Treasury at Ministry of Finance Mohammed Aqah.

The statement quoted him as saying: “We recognise the value of accelerating the use of safe electronic payments as a solution for promoting financial inclusion, increasing transparency and creating a more secure world for womeninfo-icon and their families.”

At the end of 2012, more than 70 percent of Afghanistaninfo-icon government employees received their salaries electronically, whereas this was less than 1 percent in 2006.



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