Crisis and Credit: The Case for Running a Financial Inclusion Program through a Public-Private Partnership as a Method of Poverty-Alleviation
The globally-prevalent crisis of financial exclusion ails millions especially in developing countries, by trapping low-income households in a vicious cycle of poverty. One public policy measure to address this is through the provision of low-cost microfinance under countrywide financial inclusion programs. This paper explores one such financial inclusion program launched as a public-private partnership (PPP) across Pakistan in October 2021, titled “Kamyab Pakistan Program” (KPP). More specifically, it explores the role of AIM, a high-impact Pakistani microfinance organization, as one of the implementing partners under this PPP, and posits this as an ideal PPP with potential for success. This hypothesis generating case study is analyzed through a principal-agent framework by identifying the factors under which the expected success of this PPP is predicated on. Resultantly, three hypotheses are generated that identify the following three factors: 1) ideological confluence between the government-led Program and the microfinance institution, 2) past involvement in design of the Program by the microfinance institution, and 3) creation of subjectively perceived social responsibility by the microfinance institution. This paper reaches the conclusion that a public-private partnership of the nature explored in the case-study – such that there is a certain level of confluence between both parties involved in terms of both a philosophical basis as well as operational processes – is an effective method by which to achieve financial inclusion, which is aimed specifically at poverty-reduction.
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