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Visa supports women-owned SMEs, youth in ASEAN with financial skills

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Visa, a global leader in payment solutions, said it is committed to promoting digital and financial inclusion by equipping women and youth in Southeast Asia with essential digital and financial skills to foster sustainable growth and pave the way for long-term success.

Southeast Asia’s young population, who constitute nearly a third of Southeast Asia, along with the region’s SMEs and MSMEs, which constitute 99 percent of businesses, are key to economic growth.

Visa said it aiding this progress by enhancing digital and financial literacy for women SME owners and young individuals.

Visa said it digitally enabled 10 million SMEs in Asia Pacific in 2023, and Visa Foundation committed over $47 million in the region, which has helped support 2 million women-led SMEs and sustain 500,000 jobs.  It recently pledged $100 million to APEC economies over five years.

“In the Philippines, women and young people form a crucial engine propelling local economic growth. Visa utilizes our resources and vast network to give back to the communities we operate in, particularly in promoting digital and financial inclusion. We believe in the transformative power of providing individuals and communities with global access to digital financial tools. As a key partner in Southeast Asia’s financial ecosystem, Visa is committed to reaching the most underserved communities, ensuring they too can reap the benefits of the digital economy,” said Stephen Karpin, Visa regional president for Asia Pacific.

Visa’s financial literacy program in the Philippines, launched in 2017, has educated over 36,000 students and teachers in 64 schools across 21 cities.

Visa said it works with Tanghalang Pilipino, the resident theater company of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, and Teach for the Philippines (TFP), a non-profit organization, with support from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

The program involves a Tagalog skit presented in schools which later became two web series, centered around financial literacy.

TFP was also a recent recipient of a Visa Foundation grant to support student development programs and leadership development programs that deploy transformative teachers and changemakers in schools and education governance agencies.


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