As shown by the technical underpinnings of its Ehsaas emergency program, Pakistan has all of the necessary building blocks to roll out its digital payments system and expand access to mobile money. It should seize the opportunity.
This report considers the potential of ID, mobiles, and payments to improve the capacity of governments to deliver more effective, inclusive, and accountable programs.
As the world grapples with COVID-19, more than 50 countries, including the United States, have announced some form of cash transfer or social assistance to help tide over the immediate challenges faced by their citizens. Delivering on these promises will require an enormous increase in the capacity of states to make payments to their citizens, or government-to-people (G2P) transfers, as they are widely known.
Government-to-person (G2P) payments have never been more important, as governments worldwide seek for ways to respond to the economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. The challenge of making these massive payouts to the poor and informal sector workers is highlighting the differences between the G2P payment ecosystems across countries.
Our message to countries is simple: Use what you have now to scale up quickly and build on your strengths to build back better systems. While every case is different, it is useful to compare countries at a similar stage of development and with a shared history. Together, India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh constitute over one fifth of the world’s population and almost half of the global poor. This blog offers an initial view on the ways in which the JAM is being used to scale up support.