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Unbanked Solutions

Arif Momin's Economic Development Talk Examines Credit Criteria

— October 26, 2013 — Keynote Trends
Arif Momin's economic development talk focuses on a catch-22 he refers to as the pre-paid barrier. This occurs when talented and skilled people don't meet the requirements put forth to get a job or a loan, but they require a job or a loan to meet those requirements. Momin illustrates this using the example of an acquaintance of his named Kevin. Momin states 2.5 billion people in the world are limited by this barrier, where they do not have the cash up front to pay for things like an education or a car but also do not meet the standards for credit worthiness.

This unbanked population is only judged based on the criteria society has in place. The solution, according to the economic development talk, is to widen the criteria. Many turn to micro-financing services or to locally based loans, but the interest rates are often too high. The second part of the solution is to make information regarding the transactions within the unbanked community accessible to big businesses. This is already done on a local level, where a loan might be arranged on individual terms based on reputation. The next step is to make this information widely available, similar to the way eBay allows users to judge each other's worthiness.