Philippines, Indonesia, Global

Interoperable Digital Financial Services for Credit Unions

October 2018 - June 2021

Project Overview

For economically disadvantaged populations with poor access to financial services, digital financial services hold the opportunity for expanded access and resulting enhanced economic opportunity. The digitization of interoperable payments platforms offers alternatives for underserved people who may have to travel significant distances to access cash and important financial services. Many credit unions serving economically disadvantaged communities have not yet digitized their services, in turn limiting their ability to provide members access with safe and affordable financial services.

The Interoperable Digital Financial Services for Credit Unions is a one-year planning-phase project for the design of an interoperable, open-loop, low-cost, real-time payment platform for its network of credit unions across Asia, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The first phase will focus in Indonesia and the Philippines, where the numbers of underserved and unbanked people are approximately 95 million and 69 million, respectively. As part of this first phase, WOCCU is conducting assessments in both countries, focused on several key dimensions: governance, operations, business model, regulatory, and technology.

WOCCU is working with its regional partners, the Association of Asia Confederation of Credit Unions (ACCU), the Credit Union Central of Indonesia (CUCO), and two national associations in the Philippines – the National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCCO), and the Philippines Federation of Credit Cooperatives (PFCCO). Through this project, WOCCU is also partnering with ModusBox, Inc., who will focus on technical configuration and development of a live demonstration platform, and with Paysys Global LLC, who will provide oversight on key project aspects including business, operations, and regulatory requirements.

The anticipated next phase of this project will build upon the methodology developed in the planning phase and will scale regionally, paving the way for global expansion.

Credit Unions in the the Philippines (2019)

  • 1,658 total credit unions
  • 12.3 million members (17.74% of the population)
  • USD 5.6 billion in assets

Credit Unions in the Indonesia (2019)

  • 784 total credit unions
  • 3.4 million members (1.87% of the population)
  • USD 3.5 billion in assets