A financial inclusion report showed that 355 Million account holders send or receive domestic remittances in cash or over the counter because they do not trust the traditional banking system which converts the currency from the country of origin to a much lower value. Or they fall prey to the fluctuating exchange rates and unregulated “money changers”.
According to World Bank estimates, remittances total US$585.1 billion in 2016, of which US$442 billion went to developing countries that involved 250 million migrant workers.
Among remittance receiving countries, India still topped the list with $69 billion, followed by China ($64 billion), the Philippines, Mexico ($31 billion), Nigeria ($22 billion) and Egypt ($20 billion). The report noted that while payments from immigrants back to their home countries rebounded to reach a new record in 2017, the costs of transferring funds also increased.
In ASEAN countries, only 29% of the workers receive their monthly salaries through an account from a financial institution while the rest is paid in cash by their companies. Having your salary in cash carries several risks, such as the risk of being robbed easily although these workers contribute to the economic growth and to the livelihoods of those countries where they have overseas contracts.
Overseas workers are a rich source of revenues when educated on how their money can grow on the blockchain through saving on fees, visible credit profiles, potential investment on carefully selected projects awaiting funding, community support, and protection by smart contracts.
AssetStream to the Rescue
We note one microfinancing platform in particular which can help educate workers on how to consolidate their loans, get lower transfer fees, and invest in projects which can help spur the growth of industries in the ASEAN. AssetStream will develop the ecosystem that delivers services not only to lenders and borrowers but also to agencies that choose to partner up with it.
AssetStream aims to create an extensive micro-financing ecosystem that will raise financial awareness among its clients through consulting services and educational materials. It will help bring financially excluded people to the new global economy through blockchain.
AssetStream’s platform includes the following benefits:
- Credit Rating and Badge System – A badge system will be provided to represent each borrower. This will reflect the credit rating system for the borrowers: for example, if a user has several good behavior badges, such as “paying the loan on time”, compared to a user who has a bad behavior badge such as “defaulting on loans”, the lender’s sentiment might lean towards lending to borrowers with good behavior badges.
- Immutable credit data – Borrowers cannot reverse or erase their credit history.
- Transparency – AssetStream’s smart contract operates in real time and expected obligations are transparent to all involved parties.
- Two options for Lenders are provided in the platform: 1) Handpicking – The lender has a choice to decide which borrower get the loan based on the borrower’s criteria; 2) Automatic matching – The lender will trigger a matching system when he fills up the desired criteria he wants for the loan and the AssetStream platform will match the criteria to a specific borrower.
- Lower transaction costs – AssetStream’s platform will be using the existing infrastructure and will bring out convenience for borrowers living in rural areas. This will lower overhead and transaction costs.
By using blockchain technology for microfinancing, AssetStream will create a layer of trust and security between borrowers and lenders. It is a new paradigm of the finance business to connect with the individual lender while enabling a new source of finances for small enterprises to fuel global economic growth anywhere, anytime.
AssetStream recently signed an MOU with Max Property Group (MPG), an international property investment company. Max Crowdfund is a crowdfunding platform and together with AssetStream, projects on massive numbers of their communities to support direct integration of their blockchain platforms.
250+Million Members applaud as the English Learning platform English Forward entered into an MOU with AssetStream to access microfinance resources for its teachers and learners community.