COVID-19 impact and solutions in emerging markets

Social distancing and lockdown measures have become the new reality for many across the globe in light of COVID-19. However, the effect of the resulting economic crisis has been far from uniform.

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The team at BFA Global has been monitoring the impact of the financial crisis on low-income communities in developing and some developed countries. With our team of consultants spread across geographies, we are in a unique position to evaluate the effects of the pandemic, and solutions being deployed, on the ground in the markets where we work.

As the pandemic unfolds, we are working closely with partners, their customers, and communities worldwide to develop appropriate solutions that can improve the financial resilience of vulnerable communities. From our dipstick surveys evaluating areas of highest impact to lessons gleaned from progress in Wuhan, China, to response plans from the world’s most innovative inclusive fintech startups, we offer ongoing insights and solutions to help industries cope.

COVID-19 diaries with FSD Kenya

The BFA Global team, together with FSD Kenya, conducted  interviews with previous Financial Diaries participants to understand how low-income Kenyans are coping with the impact of COVID-19 in their lives. Read what they had to say about the impact of the pandemic

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We would like to thank all contributors along with our team of editors – BFA Global CEO Amolo Ng’weno, Catalyst Fund Head of Learnings and Insights Malika Anand, and Communications Manager Nasozi Kakembo – who have been quick to analyze impact and produce insights in an effort to inform the wider ecosystem during these testing and uncertain times.

Featured Insights

La planeación de escenarios puede ayudar a las cooperativas de ahorro y préstamo mexicanas a prepararse para el impacto del COVID-19
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La planeación de escenarios puede ayudar a las cooperativas de ahorro y préstamo mexicanas a prepararse para el impacto del COVID-19

Todas las opiniones aquí expresadas son exclusivas de BFA Global, por lo que MetLife no es responsable de la...

By Jacob Winiecki
Snapshot of financial health during peak COVID-19
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Snapshot of financial health during peak COVID-19

We are two and a half months into the global Coronavirus crisis. Confirmed cases exceed seven million, and at least...

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¿Cómo está afectando el Covid-19 la salud financiera de las microempresas mexicanas?
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¿Cómo está afectando el Covid-19 la salud financiera de las microempresas mexicanas?

Todas las opiniones aquí expresadas son exclusivas de BFA Global, por lo que MetLife no es responsable de la...

By David del Ser
Scenario planning can help Mexican financial cooperatives prepare for COVID-19 impact
Financial Health |

Scenario planning can help Mexican financial cooperatives prepare for COVID-19 impact

All opinions are BFA Global’s.   While the pandemic has caused simultaneous supply and demand shocks to economies around...

By Jacob Winiecki
IndiaStack can help India recover from COVID-19, but execution is critical
Inclusive Fintech |

IndiaStack can help India recover from COVID-19, but execution is critical

COVID-19 has quite literally brought the world to a halt. Like many, the Indian government moved decisively and in...

By Arunjay Katakam
Short-term fixes are not enough if SMEs are to survive COVID-19
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Short-term fixes are not enough if SMEs are to survive COVID-19

As the economic effects of the lockdowns worldwide begin to solidify, businesses large and small are collapsing. While large...

By Coco Dong
FinnSalud y el COVID-19: Cambio a modo emergencia
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FinnSalud y el COVID-19: Cambio a modo emergencia

FinnSalud es uno de los proyectos más importantes de BFA Global, con financiamiento de MetLife Foundation y patrocinio fiscal...

By David del Ser
Keeping the Lights On: How PAYGo Solar Can Offer Customer Relief During COVID-19
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Keeping the Lights On: How PAYGo Solar Can Offer Customer Relief During COVID-19

Originally posted on the NextBillion Website, May 1, 2020  Off-grid solar delivers essential energy services for millions of people,...

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The impact of COVID-19 on financial lives in eight countries, over two weeks
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The impact of COVID-19 on financial lives in eight countries, over two weeks

Protracted battles continue to rage across the world against the invisible enemy of COVID-19, as countries enforce restrictions on...

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Five steps to help prevent the collapse of the Nigerian tech sector amidst Covid-19
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Five steps to help prevent the collapse of the Nigerian tech sector amidst Covid-19

According to the Nigerian Center for Disease Control, COVID-19 has led to 442 confirmed cases and 14 fatalities as...

By Nosa Omusi
Spazas and informal trade are excluded from COVID-19 relief efforts in South Africa
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Spazas and informal trade are excluded from COVID-19 relief efforts in South Africa

As the Coronavirus pandemic unfolds around us, South Africa has been lauded for taking an aggressive approach to control....

By Lebo Mokgabudi
How are inclusive fintech startups responding to COVID-19
Inclusive Fintech |

How are inclusive fintech startups responding to COVID-19

Inclusive fintech in the time of COVID-19 After ravaging China and developed economies – Spain, Italy, France, the United...

By Maelis Carraro
Chinese giants rose to the COVID-19 challenge. Will their global peers?
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Chinese giants rose to the COVID-19 challenge. Will their global peers?

Today, as China looks toward recovering from the pandemic, it is gratifying to note that many restaurants survived the...

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India is missing the tech-opportunity for responding to COVID-19
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India is missing the tech-opportunity for responding to COVID-19

Co-authored with Veethi Vyas     The Indian government has joined many others in adopting extreme preventive measures to...

By Priyanka Kapoor
Open-sourcing survey instrument for “COVID-19 and Your Finances” in English and Spanish
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Open-sourcing survey instrument for “COVID-19 and Your Finances” in English and Spanish

In order to conduct a rapid assessment of the impact of COVID-19, BFA Global deployed a “dipstick” online survey...

By Ashirul Amin
8 Steps for fintech startups: Planning a strategic response to COVID-19
Inclusive Fintech |

8 Steps for fintech startups: Planning a strategic response to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds around us, reported cases across most emerging markets are still relatively low. As of...

By Maelis Carraro
FinnSalud and COVID-19: Shifting to emergency mode
Financial Health |

FinnSalud and COVID-19: Shifting to emergency mode

FinnSalud is one of BFA Global’s largest projects, supported by MetLife Foundation and fiscally sponsored by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors....

By David del Ser
Taking the COVID-19 temperature in emerging markets: A dipstick survey to draw early insights about impact on Livelihoods
Financial Health |

Taking the COVID-19 temperature in emerging markets: A dipstick survey to draw early insights about impact on Livelihoods

  It has now been 19 days since the WHO declared the COVID-19 crisis a pandemic on March 11....

By Jane del Ser
¿Cómo está afectando el COVID-19 a la salud financiera de los mexicanos?
Financial Health |

¿Cómo está afectando el COVID-19 a la salud financiera de los mexicanos?

  Ahora que México cuenta con 993 casos confirmados de coronavirus y ha entrado en una Fase 2  con...

By David del Ser
Your finances and the Coronavirus pandemic: Dipstick surveys
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Your finances and the Coronavirus pandemic: Dipstick surveys

  Our social science researchers and data scientists set out to capture real-time snapshots of how Covid-19 is affecting...

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How the PAYGo solar sector can prepare for the coronavirus and keep the lights on
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How the PAYGo solar sector can prepare for the coronavirus and keep the lights on

Many parts of the world are currently locking down in an intense effort to contain COVID-19 before it takes...

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First insights from China: The effects of COVID-19 on financial health of MSEs
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First insights from China: The effects of COVID-19 on financial health of MSEs

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What Colombia-based Rappi can learn from Chinese logistics providers in response to COVID-19
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What Colombia-based Rappi can learn from Chinese logistics providers in response to COVID-19

  As of last weekend, Colombia had 210 confirmed cases of coronavirus, 88 of which were in Bogotá and...

By Malika Anand
Digital financial transfers can supercharge the response to COVID-19
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Digital financial transfers can supercharge the response to COVID-19

As soon as the scale of the worldwide pandemic became apparent, the Kenya government swung into action with measures...

By Amolo Ng'weno
COVID-19: Impact and solutions for emerging markets
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

COVID-19: Impact and solutions for emerging markets

Social distancing and lockdown measures have become the new reality for many across the globe in light of COVID-19....

By BFA GLOBAL
Gig workers have powered Wuhan’s response to COVID-19
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Gig workers have powered Wuhan’s response to COVID-19

Looking down at Wuhan from the sky, you might think the city was empty. Instead of a bustling city...

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Kenya Financial Diaries: COVID-19

This section features insights from the Financial Diaries research conducted with FSD Kenya in an effort to evaluate how low-income Kenyans are coping with the impact of the COVID-19 crisis in their lives.

 

Webinar Recap: The impact of COVID-19 on Financial Diaries respondents in Kenya

Webinar Recap: The impact of COVID-19 on Financial Diaries respondents in Kenya

When: Thursday, June 11 from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm EAT Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, FSD Kenya and BFA...

By Carmen Merab
The buck stops with women
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The buck stops with women

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 30, 2020  How Kenyan mothers are keeping food on the table through...

By Anne Gachoka
If the coronavirus doesn’t kill you…
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

If the coronavirus doesn’t kill you…

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 21, 2020  Kenyans’ reflections on security in the time of Covid-19...

By Julie Zollmann
“Our love has grown more”
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

“Our love has grown more”

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 21, 2020  Coronavirus disruptions are giving some Kenyan women a reprieve...

By Julie Zollmann
Corona Case Studies: Kibarua crunch
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Corona Case Studies: Kibarua crunch

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 14, 2020 William, 39, hunts for earning options in Mombasa William...

By Julie Zollmann
Corona Case Studies: Should I stay, or should I go?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Corona Case Studies: Should I stay, or should I go?

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 14, 2020 Considering urban to rural migration as urban incomes dwindle...

By Julie Zollmann
Shamba bora (fertile farmland), Shamba la mawe (rocky farmland)
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Shamba bora (fertile farmland), Shamba la mawe (rocky farmland)

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 14, 2020  Urban and rural areas are coping with the coronavirus...

By Julie Zollmann
Dilemmas of distancing
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Dilemmas of distancing

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 9, 2020 Barriers to coronavirus prevention behaviour change in Kenya Like...

By Julie Zollmann
Corona Case Studies: Mountains Beyond Mountains
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Corona Case Studies: Mountains Beyond Mountains

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 9, 2020 Kenyan families are trying to cope with perpetual strain...

By Julie Zollmann
The costs of coping with Coronavirus
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

The costs of coping with Coronavirus

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 8, 2020 Not only are Kenyans losing their incomes right now,...

By Julie Zollmann
Corona Case Studies: “If I had food, I would close the shop”
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Corona Case Studies: “If I had food, I would close the shop”

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 7, 2020 Millicent, 44, and Amos, 45, live in Eldoret with...

By Julie Zollmann
The ultimate stress test for financial resilience
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

The ultimate stress test for financial resilience

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 7, 2020 How coronavirus adaptations are straining Kenyans’ most robust financial...

By Julie Zollmann
When hustling fails: The impact of coronavirus mitigation efforts on ordinary people’s livelihoods
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

When hustling fails: The impact of coronavirus mitigation efforts on ordinary people’s livelihoods

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 6, 2020 Unlike many Kenyans, Esther in rural Makueni is not...

By Julie Zollmann
Corona Case Studies: Loss of Income, Loss of Pride
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Corona Case Studies: Loss of Income, Loss of Pride

Originally posted on the FSD Kenya Website, April 6, 2020 Stephen and Jessica live in their rural home in...

By Julie Zollmann