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Collaboration: Solution for the ‘first/last’ mile for remittances?
This paper explores the idea of using a cooperative approach in order to develop workers’ remittance services, using the network of postal services so as to provide an attractive and viable solution for remittances from migrant workers to their families and communities. It outlines briefly the characteristics of the current workers’ remittance market, including the expectations of the customers. It acknowledges that ‘certainty’ and ‘reliability’ and ultimately ‘access to cash’ remain essential requirements. Because the post office network around the world is twice the size of the combined banking branch network, and deeply embedded in public service structure, it is extraordinarily well placed to play a key role in providing viable services to the benefit of customers and communities as a whole. The paper describes the current status and explores how a cooperative approach which would link Posts to banks, to payment providers and to technology partners of a similar type, could effectively release potential. It elaborates on the various issues that must be considered in order to secure a comprehensive approach. It distinguishes between issues that can be handled within a global community/network and issues that currently seem better handled in partnerships. Finally, the paper lists three challenges to success that must be tackled in order to release full potential.
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