Kolkata: To reach the rural unbanked areas and to compete with the upcoming payment banks, State Bank of India (SBI), the country’s largest lender, is strengthening its low-cost Business Correspondent model. Payment banks may operate at a much lower cost than that of full-fledged or universal banks while providing access to banking services in the remote parts of the country, SBI chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya said on Friday. SBI already has about 56,000 business correspondents, operating through point of sales machines, across the country.
The bank will also soon open Customer Service Points in 500 unbanked gram panchayats in West Bengal. According to her, SBI was also strengthening its Business Correspondent (BC) model, a low cost structure, with imparting necessary training to the people with minimum academic qualifications in order to deploy them at Customer Service Points (CSPs) in the unbanked regions.