MASTERCARD and Grab, Southeast Asia’s leading superapp, announced a regional partnership to enhance digital and financial inclusion in the Southeast Asia region.

This collaboration will provide millions of informal workers and entrepreneurs on the Grab platform with access to various trainings to improve digital skills that can create more ways and income opportunities for them.

According to a recently released economic platform report by Bain and Tech for Good Institute, Southeast Asia needs to focus on increasing people’s trust and digital literacy to encourage greater digital economy participation.

The partnership between Mastercard and Grab aims to address this gap by providing underserved communities access to core digital, finance and business skills to help them better manage finances and businesses, and fully participate in the digital economy.

The scope of the two-year collaboration includes: Special training programs for informal workers and small business players, Increasing access to digital talent in Indonesia and Improving the digital economy through research and dialogue.

According to Safdar Khan, Division President, Southeast Asia Emerging Markets, Mastercard said ensuring all Indonesians have access to the networks, tools and solutions they need to be part of the digital economy is our collective responsibility.

“Through this latest step in a long-term partnership, Mastercard and Grab are committed to supporting countries like Indonesia in realizing their agenda to create a financially and digitally inclusive society,” said Safdar Khan.

Meanwhile Cheryl Goh, Group Head of Marketing and Sustainability, Grab said we have benefited greatly from Southeast Asia’s technology ecosystem, and want to do our part to support the development of local talent and businesses.

“By working with leading companies like Mastercard, we are able to deliver high-quality training programs to millions of people and businesses on our platform. We believe this partnership has the potential to boost economic growth across the region,” Cheryl Goh remarked.

The signing of this MoU also underscores the two companies’ ongoing efforts to increase digital and financial inclusion through human resource development and small business training. By 2020, Grab has trained more than 1.7 million driver-partners through its platform in various fields, such as digital literacy and finance.

Last month, with an initial US$25 million philanthropic investment from the Mastercard Impact Fund, Mastercard launched Strive, a global initiative focused on strengthening the financial resilience of small businesses, and supporting their recovery and growth. [sources/photo special]