While more people than ever are on the move in an attempt to escape war and political instability, countries in the developed world are becoming more hesitant about opening their borders to outsiders. In an effort to relieve the conditions that cause massive migration, billionaire philanthropist, George Soros, will join force with financial services company, MasterCard, to create economic opportunity within downtrodden communities worldwide.
In 2016, Soros argued that the developed world had failed in their duty to help refugees and relieve human suffering. In response, the financial wizard pledged $500 million to “invest in startups, established companies, social impact initiatives, and businesses founded by migrants and refugees themselves.” It was announce at the World Economic Forum this January that funds will now be used to initiate a program in conjuncture with the credit card behemoth, MasterCard, called Humanity Ventures. In unveiling the program, Soros stated that “our potential investment in this social enterprise, coupled with MasterCard’s ability to create products that serve vulnerable communities, can show how private capital can play a constructive role in solving social problems,” Read more story at Politico about George Soros.
While still in the planning stages, Humanity Ventures is hoped to stimulate economic development in the Third World. As stated by Ajay Banga, president and CEO of MasterCard, “We can have transformational impact by scaling our business-driven organization to leverage innovation, on-the-ground experience and long-term capital investments.” At first, the plan is to focus on improving the availability of health care and educational services to underserved areas of the world. However, Humanity Ventures could be a clearing house for many different programs to improve local economic development and entrepreneurship. For example, MasterCard has already created a digital voucher platform, MasterCard Aid Network, which has transformed how aid organizations can deliver services. “Over several years, we’ve applied our thinking and technology to help hundreds of millions connect to the formal economy and to help empower safer and more efficient aid distribution,” said Ajay Banga,
Humanity Ventures plans to tackle the chronic joblessness, and financial exclusion that afflict people in developing economies. MasterCard and George Soros believe this program that utilizes private-sector capabilities can spur development and transform life for the most needy
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