FinDev Guide

FinDev COVID-19 Update | 01 - 14 Jul 2021

Roundup of the most relevant coronavirus-related resources for the microfinance and financial inclusion community
Dragon fruit harvest, Vietnam. Photo by Tran Van Tuy, 2017 CGAP Photo Contest.

FinDev Gateway has created this COVID-19 Update with the latest and most relevant knowledge resources for financial inclusion. Sign up here if you'd like to get this update delivered to your inbox. 

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Global Update

  • The coronavirus pandemic has shifted certain stakeholder priorities, placing a higher importance on strengthening client resilience and women’s empowerment, according to the new Financial Inclusion Compass 2021, which includes perceptions of 125 respondents working in 39 countries.

  • CGAP, GOGLA and IFC Lighting Global have launched the PAYGo Performance, Reporting and Measurement (PERFORM) key performance indicators (KPIs). The KPIs will promote transparency and help PAYGo solar companies to benchmark and improve their performance. A consistent set of KPIs would also make it easier for investors, donors, and other stakeholders to structure targeted interventions if the industry needs support during a future crisis, like the one brought on by the COVID-19.





Some articles and knowledge resources referenced in this section are in French.

  • Recent research by FSD Kenya highlights the need for reforming digital credit regulations to provide better consumer protection and transparency for users. Insights are based on four rounds of phone interviews with 200 households between March and December 2020. 
  • The top four African fintech startups (also referred to as unicorns because of their $1 billion+ valuation) have recorded an increase in both number of users and transaction values since the onset of the pandemic as lockdowns and social distancing measures have pushed people towards fintech and e-commerce platforms. More companies are expected to reach the unicorn status in the region as the sector continues to attract funding
  • Blockchain technology could add $29 billion to Nigeria’s GDP by 2030, according to a report by the development organization Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA), which could help support post-pandemic recovery.

For more on Africa, check out the latest Portail FinDev Biweekly Update in French.


Latin America and the Caribbean

Most articles and knowledge resources referenced in this section are in Spanish.

  • The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the demand for digital financial products, resulting in a growing fintech sector in Latin America, according to the research firm, Fidexable. Two countries in the region, Brazil and Uruguay, now rank among the top 20 global fintech ecosystems.
  • Visa reported an increase in the use of the “Tap to Phone” solution in LAC, led by Peru with more than 25,000 small businesses using the tool which allows them to convert their cell phones into payment terminals.
  • In Colombia, entrepreneurs are more likely to save in formal accounts if they have received financial education, use the internet to conduct transactions, are connected to the entrepreneurial ecosystem and have higher sales, according to a new study by Banca de las Oportunidades, a government program.
  • ECLAC has revised upward its forecast for the region’s economy in 2021, predicting an increase of 5.2 percent, compared to the previous estimate of 3.7 percent, driven by the end of confinements and the increase in the prices of raw materials.

For more on LAC, check out the latest Portal FinDev Biweekly Update in Spanish.


Arab World

Some articles and knowledge resources referenced in this section are in French and Arabic.

  • The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) launched a $120 million program for young entrepreneurs in Egypt. EBRD has also allocated $10 million to support small enterprises in Palestine.  
  • The European Investment Bank renewed its support for the Jordanian economy with a $119 million credit line to Jordan Kuwait Bank targeting local SMEs severely impacted by COVID-19.
  • Almost half of all SMEs in Kuwait will go bankrupt and are considering applying for liquidation due to their inability to continue coping with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more on the Arab world and resources in Arabic, check out the latest FinDev Update in Arabic.

COVID-19 Resources

“Covid-19” image by Prachatai. Used with permission.

COVID-19 Resource Hub

A collective space for the financial inclusion community to share experiences and lessons learned from the pandemic

FinDev Guide to Data - Tracking the Global Response to COVID-19

FinDev Coronavirus Data Tracker

Data relevant for financial inclusion - find out who is tracking what

Photo by Thao Vu Xuan, 2016 CGAP Photo Contest

COVID-19 Insights for Inclusive Finance

Collection of recent CGAP blogs and publications


Blogs & Opinion

If you have a blog idea and would like to write for the FinDev Blog, please review our guidelines. We do not cross-post blogs that have been published elsewhere, but if you wish to share an existing blog post in our next FinDev COVID-19 Update, you can send it to us using our contact form.

Sustainable Solutions Way Forward for Philippines Central Bank (BSP)

Six Reasons Why Remittances Soared in South Asia During COVID-19

Are Mobile Payments Reaching Men and Women Equally? Latest Findings on How G2P Payments Are Working in Bangladesh

Why Economists Need to Pay Attention to Social Relations

Many Thought the Pandemic Would Imperil Microfinance. It Did the Opposite.


Recent Publications

Do you have a publication to add to this list? Share your work on FinDev Gateway.

Financial Inclusion Compass 2021

Surviving 2020: Lessons on Resilience from Kenya’s COVID Diaries


View All Publications Related to COVID-19 >


Where Do We Go Now? How the Financial Inclusion Sector Sees a Post-COVID Future (Webinar Recording)


View All Upcoming Events Related to COVID-19 >

View All Webinar Recordings>

View All News Related to COVID-19 >

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