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Sri Lanka


Distribution channels to reach the unbanked

Although NSB owns a network of more than 4,500 service points all over the country, it devotes itself to developing distribution channels to enable unbanked people in rural areas to have access to basic financial services.
NSB uses its various distribution channels to enable unbanked people in rural areas to have access to financial services. NSB has already established a strong island wide network of 4,576 service points, which is strongly supplemented by the Postal Network with 11 Postal Banking Branches, 637 Post Offices and 3,408 Sub-Post Offices in an effort to bring banking closer to the poor. Postal Network is the only network in Sri Lanka which has access to each and every household in the island. Besides,
  • In order to establish more bank units, closer to poor households, and to devise a mechanism to inculcate savings habits, NSB is concentrating on opening small banking units known as “Piyasa”, a savings unit in a low cost branch module in remote areas.
  • In order to collect small savings at the door step from people in rural areas, the staff of NSB use small hand-held devices which are linked online to the bank’s server through GPRS (General Packet Radio Switching)
  • Savings enable people to start expanding microenterprises or other income generating opportunities and provide poor people with an opportunity to accumulate their small savings. The concept of “Ithurum Ayojana Kawaya” (IAK; Savings Investment Circle) has been proposed by the Bank. A single IAK consists of twenty to thirty members with the prime objective of inculcating the habit of saving. IAK is formed by the village community with a group leader (Regional Development Agent, RDA) who has overall responsibility for collecting money from the group members. A single branch operates multiple IAKs, which are coordinated through a Marketing Officer.
  • NSB has started to use banking units on wheels (mobile banking units) that travel to strategic locations with high consumer traffic (schools, market places, weekly fairs, festivals, etc) during non conventional banking hours and days. This facility will also be used to promote “Hapan” Children’s Savings accounts within village schools.

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