Central Asia has enormous FinTech potential as access to mobile communication devices and the internet continue to increase, especially with the rising popularity of digital payments, better government support initiatives and general post-economic recovery. At the same time, much of this potential lies in the fact that Central Asia is a developing region with underutilized financial innovation and FinTech opportunities. To fully emerge, there is a strong need for comprehensive national development plans that tackle issues related to financial inclusion and how to successfully introduce practical FinTech solutions.
Two regional countries leading the way are Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. Kazakhstan has a relatively developed financial sector and infrastructure that supports financial innovations. The creation of the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC) has also helped increase FinTech investments and promoted e-commerce in the country. For its part, Uzbekistan has made major strides in a short period of time, mostly by utilizing modern payment systems and adopting (on a legislative basis) a course for the introduction and development of digital banks.
FinTech can help empower Central Asia and is an integral part of the economic development of the region.