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Access to traditional banking services is limited in developing countries. The World Bank estimates that 1.7 billion adults are unbanked, yet more than 65% of them own a mobile phone. For this group of underserved in developing countries, mobile money is a technology that enables them to receive, store and spend money using just a mobile phone, in the absence of a bank account.

Read more: Opportunities in Asia’s mobile money markets

The telecommunications industry is the backbone of technological growth and digital transformation. While revenues in the telecom sector declined in the first half of 2020, owing to economic impact as a result of the pandemic, GSMA reported that recovery took place in the second half of the year with increased consumers and households acquiring integrated bundle services and high-speed connectivity becoming sought after across all rungs of society.

Read more: Harnessing artificial intelligence to transform telcos

Singapore helms the top spot as Asia Pacific’s most innovative country according to the latest Global Innovation Index released in 2020. This makes it the seventh consecutive year that Singapore covets the first spot across economies in the region. Globally, Singapore is in the eighth spot, behind countries such as Switzerland in the top spot, the US, Britain, Denmark and Finland.

Read more: Singapore: Why this small city-state is a regional innovation hub