The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG), the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. It is to leave no one behind. To make the world a better place for all. And it is by the means of creating an equitable world where everyone can take part in facilities to lead a balanced life. When it is the vision by the many nations of the world then it is necessary to make everyone financially more active and operative.
The banking facility is one of the key elements when we think about economy of a country. The more we can connect people under this network the more blessing it is for the economy. And Bangladesh is no difference of it. However, in our country it is seen that full-service banking network is widen only within the urban areas of the country. Remote parts are deprived of it and this is hampering our progress towards inclusive economic development.
Currently we have ways to break this barrier. Now we have technology based financial solutions to connect the remote parts of the country. Through the Mobile Financial Service(MFS) it is easy to reach everyone from urban parts to remote areas. However, it is not the inclusive economic development the SDG dreams about. As it is not for full-service banking facility .We can say the MFS mostly as the way of instant money transferring media. So, we need another solution to meet the goal of SDG.
We have introduced agent banking already. And it is to bring in the unbanked people under the umbrella of banking network. No doubt that it is a very good initiative. Gradually those unbanked people are becoming accustomed to the banking services where city people already are bringing the equality is one of the key factors to implement the SDG. And financial inclusion is must for this equality.
Though agent banking is showing the hope, it is still to grow with full potentiality. The money deposit growth in agent banking is very bright in number which shows the growing popularity of this new era of banking. However, the way banks are taking the deposit it is not in the same pace they are providing the loan facilities. They are very much reluctant to provide loan by the way of village stores- the agents. So only mopping-up the deposits from the rural areas and then providing it to the urban areas really creating the imbalances in the economic system and hindering the goal towards SDG. So here banks are keeping themselves away from their basic tasks- getting deposit and then giving out loan. If the agent banking is another means of transferring money or giving a safe locker of money, then really it will lose its appeal.
Agent banking is showing us the hope to bring in every people under the banking network as it is cost effective to setup, not requires that much arrangements a bank branch needed to be open. That is why we should utilize this facility to build up community in every corner of the country where everyone is under the banking umbrella.
It is banking for all.
The writer is working at K-Securities and Consultants Limited