Economy 2021, a global outlook report offering a comprehensive overview of the economic effects of COVID-19, has been published by the Mastercard Economics Institute, including continual shifts in digital consumer buying habits, online banking expansion, fintech disruption, and opportunities to improve financial inclusion.
The sharp move to digital platform use, powered by changed customer behavior, mobility constraints and the need to generate business revenues outside brick-and-mortar locations, is among the main trends examined.
The report highlights three major aspects:
- E-commerce is here to stay: Mastercard Economics Institute report estimates that 20-30% of the COVID-related surge in e-commerce spending to be a permanent feature in share of overall retail spending
- Digitization is key to advancing financial inclusion: Young and digitally savvy populations across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) are key to long-term growth outlook, but youth unemployment poses a threat to growth prospects
- The future is young: The opportunity for fintech disruption is high in Africa, with digitization enabling financial inclusion in emerging markets
As part of a global $250 million commitment of goods and services over the next five years, Mastercard has dedicated itself to powering small businesses through its payment systems, networks and insights.