InfoCorp Partners with TS Group for Cashless Foreign Workers Dormitory Trial

There are more than 600,000 foreign workers working in the marine, processing, manufacturing, and construction sectors in Singapore. They form 9% of Singapore’s population and live in hostels and dormitories across the country.

In a preliminary study conducted by InfoCorp at the Tuas View Dormitory, cash transactions represent 80% of all payments within the dormitory, which is higher than the national average of 18%[1].Their high physical cash usage exposes foreign workers to theft and fraud. On top of that, existing banking services meant for citizens are not suitable for these foreign workers; they do not benefit from non-cash payment instruments and online banking services.

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Finally, and most importantly, the bulk of the foreign workers’ salaries goes to remittance. Popular remittance services such as the Western Union generally offer over-the-counter cash remittance services which further encourage the use of cash. Banked work permit holders in Singapore will withdraw all their payroll in cash from the ATM to send the bulk of it home. Each worker queue from 30 to 60 minutes on average for cash withdrawal. Moreover, remittance using such services is expensive.

Even in Singapore, a regional financial hub, these foreign workers are underserved by local banks. Due to their transient nature and unique financial circumstances, addressing their pain points will require a drastically different approach from existing solutions available in the market.

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InfoCorp and TS Group of Companies has entered into a partnership to deploy InfoCorp’s CrossPay to foreign workers staying in Tuas View Dormitory and Mandai Dormitory. CrossPay is a blockchain-based mobile delivery mechanism for inclusive banking services, unlike traditional wallet apps providing only payment related services.

Tuas View Dormitory was launched in 2014 as Singapore’s first mega integrated dormitory with a capacity of up to 16,800 beds. It is the largest worker’s dormitory in Singapore catering to the marine, manufacturing, processing and construction industries. It is a self-sufficient community with amenities like minimarts, beer garden, food court, outdoor cinema, and many sports and social areas. Mandai Dormitory, another dormitory under the TS Group, has a capacity of 8,000 beds and also caters for female foreign domestic workers. Utilising InfoCorp’s CrossPay, Tuas View will facilitate cashless transactions by migrant workers from in-dormitory merchants and mobile remittances. According to Tome Oh, Director of TS Group, “TS Group has been in the business of providing a high level of care and total service to the underserved community such as foreign workers and maids. By partnering with InfoCorp, TS Group is raising the bar and moving our dormitories to a cashless community. We are very excited about this new offering. It is scalable and we can integrate this into our future businesses.”

[1] http://www.mas.gov.sg/~/media/MAS/News%20and%20Publications/Press%20Releases/Singapore%20Payments%20Roadmap%20Report%20%20August%202016.pdf

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