a2i enters into an MOU with Mastercard and Bank Asia to strengthen Digital Financial Services

Access to Information (a2i), Bank Asia and Mastercard entered into a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today, in an endeavor to offer financial services to the rural unbanked people of Bangladesh and make digital payment services accessible all over the country through the Union Digital Centers (UDCs).

The MoU was inked at a ceremony held at the Prime Minister’s Office at Old Airport Road in the capital city, Dhaka on October 30, 2017. Mr. Syed Mohammad Kamal, Country Manager Mastercard Bangladesh; Mr. Md. Arfan Ali, President & Managing Director of Bank Asia and Mr. Kabir Bin Anwar, Director General (Administration), Prime Minister’s Office and Project Director, a2i programme and other high officials from respective organizations attended the program.

With this endeavor, it is expected that this would contribute to achieving the Government’s vision of making a digital Bangladesh by 2021. A2i will also assist, Bank Asia and Mastercard to extend financial services through Union Digital Centers, which are already partnered with Agent Banking. It will foster a creation of pro-poor digital financial products and services by linking financial service providers.

Mastercard with the assistance of Access to Information (a2i) and Bank Asia will provide necessary technical knowledge to introduce innovative payment systems in Bangladesh by establishing a digital-payment ecosystem throughout the country. This will be done through universal payment instruments for Bank Asia agents to handle e-commerce transactions from the UDCs. Mastercard would also assist a2i and Bank Asia in implementing the Mastercard co-branded payment cards.

Mr. Kabir bin Anwar, Director General (administration), Prime minister’s office and project Director, a2i programme said `if Government and non-government organizations work jointly, the value of government services will increase tremendously to bring overall benefit to much number of the people of Bangladesh. Especially the underprivileged citizen of Bangladesh will be benefited from this MOU. It will help to shape citizen-oriented financial products from Union Digital Center through Bank Asia Agent Banking’.

Mr. Syed Mohammad Kamal, Country Manager, Mastercard Bangladesh said, “This tripartite partnership with Access to information (a2i) and Bank Asia Limited will further strengthen our payment offerings to the unbanked and underbanked population of Bangladesh. Mastercard is proud to leverage its wide range of technologies to bring the mass people within the financial system. We are delighted about this partnership and believe that it will go a long way along the digital Bangladesh mandate of the government, whilst benefiting the country as a whole by disbursing subsidy digitally. We are also extremely happy to get Bank Asia alongside us as our partner towards building a less cash society”.

President & Managing Director of Bank Asia Mr. Md. Arfan Ali in his speech said “This agreement will give an impetus to the Bank Asia’s effort to ensure rights of country people to have a bank account and reach financial services to doorsteps using the bank’s digital payment platform. I strongly believe this joint effort will play a strong role in changing the horizon of rural economy and contribute to achieve the government’s public service innovation agenda Vision 2021 “


Access to Information (a2i) is the world’s first Innovation Lab+ and the key driver from the Bangladesh Prime Minister’s Office of the government’s public service innovation agenda to implement the government’s Vision 2021. The objective of the project is to increase transparency, improve governance, and reduce the time, difficulty and costs of obtaining government services for under-served communities of Bangladesh.
Mastercard (NYSE: MA) is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. Mastercard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MastercardAP and @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.


Bank Asia Limited started its service with a vision to serve people with modern and innovative banking products and services at affordable charge. Being parallel to the cutting edge technology the Bank is offering online banking with added delivery channels like ATM, Tele-banking, SMS and Net Banking. And as part of the bank’s commitment to provide all modern and value added banking service in keeping with the very best standard in a globalize world.