The News Scroll 04 June 2020  Last Updated at 10:10 pm | Source: PTI

Provide business correspondents monetary support, insurance: BCFI to govt

Provide business correspondents monetary support, insurance: BCFI to govt
New Delhi, Jun 4 (PTI) The Business Correspondents Federation of India (BCFI) on Thursday urged the government to provide monetary support of Rs 5,000 per month as well as insurance benefits to business correspondents (BCs) for providing uninterrupted financial services during these challenging times.

The benefits should be applicable with effect from April 2020 for six months, the federation said post a virtual roundtable. 

It also asked banks to provide liquidity support to Corporate Business Correspondents who facilitate credit to low-income communities through a large field force, much like microfinance institutions.

The roundtable was attended by industry players like Sub-K, FIA Global, Nearby, Fino Payments Bank, Oxigen and SaGgraha.  

Business correspondents are playing a crucial role in financial inclusion, helping customers, especially in rural areas where banking services are limited, the industry body said.

"Digital transactions are on the rise as witnessed in May 2020. AEPS (Aadhar enabled payment services) as well as UPI transactions are expected to lead the way. BC network can be leveraged to source MSME loans which act as a fuel in recharging the economy. 

"Hence it is a crucial juncture for the government and other stakeholders to view BC networks favourably," the federation said.

Sasidhar Thumuluri, chairman of BCFI and MD & CEO, Sub-K IMPACT Solutions, said during the COVID-19 lockdown more than 80 per cent agents have worked tirelessly to meet the demand for money, especially enabling the withdrawal of DBT released by the government as part of PMGKY and other schemes. 

"With the gradual opening up of the economy, role of BCs will become even more important as cash starts flowing into the system, loans start getting repaid and new loans disbursed," Thumuluri said.

Seema Prem, CEO, FIA Global, said banks should leverage the extensive digital distribution network they have created for turbo charging MSME loan sanctions. BCs are ideally placed with their extensive reach and connect with last mile customers. 

Amit Jain, Chief - Business Operations, Fino Payments Bank, said in the coming days when people get used to living with COVID-19 and even in the post-coronavirus era, BCs will play larger role as essential services providers by maintaining the cash availability equilibrium in the remotest parts of India.

With the help of NPCI and banks, 8 lakh BC agents put up a fantastic front in helping crores of citizens access financial services, PayNearby MD & CEO Anand Kumar Bajaj said. PTI KPM ABM ABM

Disclaimer :- This story has not been edited by Outlook staff and is auto-generated from news agency feeds. Source: PTI
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