The Note Ban announced by Prime Minister Modi on 8th November is part of a global strategy to make people pay for the banking crisis caused by big corporate defaulters in several countries. This strategy is clearly reflected in a recent Report from Global Research. The Report traces the collaboration between the Indian and US states in the matter of financial management of the economy.
On October 14, 2016, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) announced a new multi-stakeholder partnership with the Indian Ministry of Finance called “Catalyst: Inclusive Cashless Payment Partnership”. The press statement of 14th October says that Catalyst “marks the next phase of partnership between USAID and Ministry of Finance to facilitate universal financial inclusion”. The origin of this partnership goes back two years prior to this. According to a report of the Indian business paper, the Economic Times, USAID has committed to finance Catalyst for three years. Amounts are kept secret. Catalyst is mandated to assist solve coordination problems that have blocked the penetration of digital payments among small businesses low-income consumers. These problems were discussed in a USAID commissioned Report presented in January 2016. This Report had been commissioned in the context of the anti-cash partnership with the Indian Ministry of Finance.
The website of catalyst.org one reflects that its members are mostly big international and Indian financial institutions and banks, international donor agencies, IT- and payment service providers who want to make money from digital payments or from the associated data generation on users. Membership includes HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, the Gates Foundation (Microsoft), Omidyar Network (eBay), the Dell Foundation Mastercard, Visa, Metlife Foundation, and has links with Indian e-commerce companies. The Catalyst partnership is an extension of the Better-Than-Cash-Alliance which was created in 2012 to reduce cash transactions around the world. The alliance is backed by Indian and Asian businesses with a strong investment in reducing cash transactions and expanding the digital transaction market. The Catalyst team will be located at the Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) and supported by USAID’s Mobile Solutions Technical Assistance and Research (mSTAR) program.