The Emerging Payments Association explores financial inclusion in the UK


Fintechs can play a key role in increasing financial inclusion, according to the Emerging Payments Association (EPA), as it published its new insight that explores some of the issues that young and elderly age-groups in the UK face when it comes to accessing financial services. 

The research coincides with England’s emergence from its second lockdown and underlines some of the inclusivity initiatives and solutions that are currently offered by fintechs to address these issues.

The Financial Inclusion Commission detailed that the larger majority of those that struggle with financial inclusion or either aged 16-24 or over 65. Furthermore, it comes at a time when the issue is heightened due to the global financial crisis. 

As the Christmas period beckons and spending is likely to increase, finding solutions and embracing various fintechs that support financial inclusion is imperative, according to the findings, sponsored by the EPA’s founding benefactor, Mastercard. 

Tony Craddock, Director General of the Emerging Payments Association, commented on the update: “The industry is changing fast. Innovation is everywhere. But we are still leaving people behind. And that’s not right. I believe this collaborative piece of work will inspire us into action so that in time, everyone has access to the payment services they deserve.”

The research follows the EPA launching its Project Inclusion, which ‘aims to drive industry activity to address financial exclusion and to provide clarity on fintech innovations and solutions that reduce financial exclusion’. 

The report bolsters the body in its bid to bring the issue to the forefront of media attention and increase the support for those who are most likely to be impacted. 

Josh Berle, Business Development Director, Mastercard, and Lead of EPA Project Inclusion, added: “Mastercard is delighted to support EPA’s Project Inclusion and thrilled to have helped produce this new report, which is full of rich takeaways on improving inclusion for all types of users at risk and particularly the youngest and older age groups. 

“Promoting financial inclusion is a key part of Mastercard’s ethos to do well by doing good and we will continue our work with EPA to do precisely that.”

Expert Analysis: The role of fintechs in the economic recovery of the UK is pivotal, it is something we have seen within the government’s response to the pandemic as they have focused on ensuring the sector recovers and is stable. Financial inclusion remains a significant issue, the embracing of fintech can undoubtedly be key in going some way to solving it.