Supporting digital payments in cash programming in Sudan

We commissioned Strategic Impact Advisors (SIA) to examine the challenges and opportunities of providing digital financial services (DFS) in Sudan, particularly to displaced populations and low-income segments. The aim was to explore ways of supporting digital payments in cash programming. The assignment examined the supply side by conducting a private sector stakeholder mapping and product summary. These identified players, including government entities, involved in delivering digital finance, their roles, responsibilities, and products and services provided.

On the demand side, SIA leveraged the Connectivity Usage and Needs Assessment (CoNUA) data by the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), supported by GSMA, to conduct additional analysis on beneficiary digital readiness and assess the key challenges stopping them from either accessing or using their mobile devices in more diverse and confident ways. It also explored key barriers to digital inclusion within these groups and what stakeholders might do to address them. The CoNUA analysis covered White Nile and West Darfur.

Based on the analysis of the key barriers for both the supply and demand side, SIA came up with recommendations for how the humanitarian sector can help improve access to financial services and strengthen the underlying digital payments infrastructure. SIA also developed a high-level revenue potential analysis to help service providers assess the market opportunity for delivering digital cash transfers.