Banking With A Thumbprint at Women’s Microbank Ltd.

Distance to the nearest bank and the lack of formal identification has been a major barrier to accessing financial services in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Last year, the Women’s Microbank Ltd. (WMBL) and the United Nations’ Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme (PFIP) embarked on a partnership to develop a new innovative solution that could help remove these banking barriers not just in PNG but for the whole Pacific region.

This pilot project enters the next phase with six Mama Bank Access Points (MAPs) becoming operational today. Over the past few months, WMBL and PFIP have developed a biometric enabled system that makes financial services more accessible for rural communities, especially for women who are WMBL’s main customers.