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NITI Aayog & Mastercard release report on Digitally Inclusive Bharat

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NITI Aayog and Mastercard Release Report on Connected CommerceNITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India) & Mastercard released a report titled ‘Connected Commerce: Creating a Roadmap for a Digitally Inclusive Bharat’. FTI Consulting was the Research and Curation Partner of the report.

  • It identifies the challenges in accelerating digital financial inclusion in India and provides recommendations for making digital services accessible to 1.3 Billion citizens of India.
  • The report was released by Dr Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog and other key persons.
  • NITI Aayog was the knowledge partner in the five roundtable discussions based on which the report has been prepared.

Key Recommendations of the report

i.Enhancing the payment infrastructure to promote a level playing field for Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) & Banks.

ii.Digitizing registration & compliance processes, and diversifying credit sources to enable growth opportunity for MSMEs (Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises).

iii.To create an information-sharing system, including a ‘fraud repository’, and making it necessary for all e-commerce platforms to carry warnings to alert consumers about the risk of frauds.

iv.Enabling Agricultural NBFCs to access low-cost capital and deploy a ‘phygital’ model (physical+digital) to achieve better long-term digital outcomes. Digitizing land records also was recommended.

v.To develop a fully open system similar to that of London ‘Tube’ (rapid transit system of London) to make city transit accessible to all with minimal crowding and queues. Smartphones and contactless cards will be utilized to ensure minimal crowding and queues. 

Knowledge Series

The recommendations are the result of five roundtable discussions  (knowledge series) held between October & November 2020 between Government experts, the banking sector, the financial regulator, fintech enterprises and other ecosystem innovators.

i.The discussions were led by NITI Aayog and supported by Mastercard.

ii.The Key issues discussed during the five roundtable discussions (or knowledge series) were

  • Acceleration of digital financial inclusion for underserved sections of Indian society.
  • Enabling SMEs to ‘get paid, get capital and get digital’ and access customers.
  • Policy interventions to increase trust & cyber resilience.
  • Unlocking the potential of digitization in India’s agriculture sector.
  • Essential elements of a digital road to make transit accessible for all citizens.

Note – India was ranked 49th out of 120 countries in the ‘Inclusive Internet Index 2021’ released by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) in partnership with Facebook.

Recent Related News:

i.According to the report ‘Prime-Time for Real Time’-2021 launched by ACI Worldwide and GlobalData, India with 25.5 Billion transactions topped the list of countries with the most real-time transactions in Digital Payments in 2020. It was followed by China (15.7 Billion) & South Korea (6.0 Billion).

About NITI Aayog

CEO – Amitabh Kant
Headquarters – New Delhi

About Mastercard

CEO – Michael Miebach
Headquarters – New York, USA