世界银行:监管沙盒能否释放普惠金融潜力? - 互联网金融门户 未央网

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世界银行:监管沙盒能否释放普惠金融潜力?

国际资讯监管与政策

世界银行:监管沙盒能否释放普惠金融潜力?

对那些有助于提高金融普惠性而不会产生重大风险的创新,监管机构需要做出恰当反应。监管沙盒已成为这方面很有潜力的一种工具。监管沙盒是由监管机构设立的一个框架,它使金融科技(FinTech)初创公司和其他创新企业可以在监管机构的监督下在受控环境中进行实时实验。目前监管沙盒正得到越来越多的运用——主要是在发达的金融市场上。除少数例外情况以外,使用监管沙盒的国家多是用它来接纳甚至刺激金融科技创新;通常来说,监管沙盒并不是明确地以普惠金融为重点。这就提出了以下问题:监管沙盒能否在新兴市场和发展中国家发挥作用,推动那些旨在使当前缺乏金融服务的客户从中受益的金融科技创新? ?

这个问题引起了普惠金融界的兴趣。例如,一份对20国集团数字普惠金融高级原则的补充报告提出,监管沙盒是平衡创新与风险、促进金融普惠的一种手段。就目前而言,关于监管沙盒有效性的证据仍很薄弱。由于监管沙盒仍是新生事物,形式多样,而且相关绩效数据缺乏,因此很难(甚至几乎不可能)衡量它们对金融市场的影响,更不用说对普惠金融的影响。不过,我们的工作假设是,监管沙盒不管是否将金融普惠作为一个关键目标,都可以推动有助于使被排斥客户受益的创新。金融科技创新可以带来更具可负担性的产品和服务;建立覆盖被排斥群体的新分销渠道;提高运营效率,使向低利润客户提供服务也有利可图;同时提供新的合规和风险管理方法(如简化客户尽职调查、采用替代性信用评分机制等)。

在已经建立或正在建立监管沙盒的国家中,至少有三个——巴林、印度和马来西亚——已明确将金融普惠作为监管沙盒的主要目标之一。其他国家可能也会根据自己的政策目标、任务和重点事项而加以效仿。如果决策者决定将金融普惠作为监管沙盒的一个内在组成部分,那么他们可以通过多种方式做到这一点。比如,可以对偏重金融普惠的创新机构实行优惠政策,简化技术采纳程序,减免执照费用,或是引入衡量创新对金融普惠影响的绩效指标。通过支持这种类型的创新机构,监管机构可以用沙盒来衡量创新对金融普惠的潜在影响,有针对性地调整政策干预措施,以增加收益、降低风险。

尽管多种原因表明使用监管沙盒是值得探讨的一项举措,但政策制定者应该做好迎接挑战的准备。最重要的一条是,运行监管沙盒需要充足的人力和财力来选择提案、提供指导、监督实验和评估创新。很多新兴市场和发展中国家的监管机构可能缺乏这样的资源。因此,决策者在决定使用监管沙盒时需要十分注意各方面细节,认真分析各种可用方案,包括多种不同的沙盒设计和其他已被成功使用的推动创新的方法。例如,“测试-学习”方法使监管机构能够制定一个临时性框架,其中具备必要的保障措施和关键绩效指标,创新者可在此框架内在真实环境中对新的想法进行测试。而观望(wait-and-see)方法则使监管机构可以先用一段时间来观察创新的发展演变,然后再决定如何进行干预(如中国的P2P贷款)。

监管沙盒是一个新兴事物,目前还无法对它形成全面理解或进行完整评估。由于缺乏通过监管沙盒所开展的成功测试的可靠长期数据,目前对其风险和收益的看法在很大程度上只是猜测,今后需要开展进一步研究。扶贫协商小组(CGAP)对各国现有的监管沙盒进行了全面回顾,以便深入考察它在新兴市场和发展中国家的实际和潜在作用,特别是推动普惠金融方面的作用。这项工作仍在继续,而我们的研究成果则为政策制定者探讨这一复杂领域提供了指南。

相关阅读:《监管沙盒与普惠金融

Many regulators need to address innovations that could advance financial inclusion without incurring major risks. Regulatory sandboxes have emerged as a tool that has potential. A regulatory sandbox is a framework set up by a regulator that allows FinTech startups and other innovators to conduct live experiments in a controlled environment under a regulator’s supervision. Regulatory sandboxes are gaining popularity, mostly in developed financial markets. With a few exceptions, the countries with regulatory sandboxes designed them to accommodate or even spur FinTech innovations; typically, they are not designed to focus explicitly on financial inclusion. This raises the question: Could regulatory sandboxes be useful in emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs) to advance FinTech innovations designed to benefit unserved and underserved customers?

This question has piqued the interest of the financial inclusion community. For instance, a report that complements the G20 High-Level Principles for Digital Financial Inclusion refers to regulatory sandboxes as a means to balance innovation and risk in favor of financial inclusion. For now, evidence for the effectiveness of regulatory sandboxes is weak. The newness, variability and lack of performance data on sandboxes make it difficult (if not impossible) to measure their impact on financial markets, let alone on financial inclusion. However, our working hypothesis is that regulatory sandboxes can enable innovations that are likely to benefit excluded customers, regardless of whether inclusion is a key objective. FinTech innovations can lead to more affordable products and services, new distribution channels that reach excluded groups, operational efficiencies that make it possible to serve low-margin customers profitably and compliance and risk-management approaches (e.g., simplified customer due diligence and alternative credit scoring).

Three of the 18 countries where regulatory sandboxes have been or are being established — Bahrain, India and Malaysia — have explicitly listed financial inclusion among their key objectives. Other countries may follow suit depending on their policy goals, mandates and priorities. Policy makers who decide to make financial inclusion an integral part of their sandboxes could do so in several ways. For instance, they could favor pro-inclusion innovators with a more streamlined admissions process, licensing fee waivers, or performance indicators that measure innovations' impact on financial inclusion. By favoring pro-inclusion innovators, regulators could use sandboxes to measure innovations' potential impact on financial inclusion and tailor policy interventions to increase the benefits and mitigate the risks.

While there are good reasons to explore regulatory sandboxes, policy makers should be prepared to face challenges. Most importantly, operating a regulatory sandbox requires adequate human and financial resources to select proposals, provide guidance, oversee experiments and evaluate innovations. Regulators may lack these resources in many EMDE countries. Therefore, policy makers need to pay attention to details and carefully consider their options. These may include various sandbox designs and other pro-innovation approaches that have been used successfully. For example, the test-and-learn approach enables a regulator to craft an ad hoc framework within which an innovator tests a new idea in a live environment, with safeguards and key performance indicators in place. A wait-and-see approach allows a regulator to observe how an innovation evolves before intervening (e.g., person-to-person lending in China).

Regulatory sandboxes are too new to be fully understood and evaluated. In the absence of hard, long-term data on successful testing, their risks and benefits are speculative, but they deserve further attention. CGAP has conducted a comprehensive mapping of regulatory sandboxes to gain insights into their actual and potential role in EMDEs, particularly regarding financial inclusion. With our findings, we offer a compass for policy makers to navigate through this complex new landscape.


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