RBI Grade 'B' Officer Mains (Phase II) Exam - 2007
English Paper 1
1. Write an argumentative essay of about 500 words on any one of the
- Has the virtual workplace become a reality?
- Health insurance and wealth!
- Laptops for notebooks, what next in schools?
- In the Light of the popularity of ODIs and 20 x 20s has Test Cricket a
- What's wrong with the SEZ policy?
Make a precis of the following passage in your own words,
reducing it to about 250 words, and give it a suitable title. Use the special
sheet provided for the purpose:-24
The idea that mobile phones bring economic benefits is now
widely accepted. In places with bad roads, few trains and parlous land lines,
they substitute for travel, allow price data to be distributed more quickly and
easily, enable traders to reach wider markets and generally ease the business of
doing business. Leonard Waverman of the London Business School has estimated
that an extra ten mobile phones per 100 people in a typical developing country
leads to an extra half a percentage point of growth in GDP per person. To
realize the economic benefits of mobile phones, governments in such countries
need to do away with state monopolies, issue new licenses to allow rival
operators to enter the market and slash taxes on handsets. With few exceptions
(halo, Ethiopia), they have done so, and mobile phones are now spreading fast,
even in the poorest parts of the world.
As mobile phones have spread, a new economic benefit is
coming into view ; using them for banking and, so improving access to financial
services, not just telecoms networks. Pioneering M-banking projects in the
Philippines, Kenya and South Africa show the way. These “branchless” schemes
typically allow customers to deposit and withdraw cash through a mobile
operator's airtime-re-sale agents, and send money to other people via text
messages that can be exchanged for cash by visiting an writ Workers can then be
paid by phone; taxi-drivers and delivery-drivers can accept payments without
carrying cash around; money can be easily sent to friends and family. A popular
use is to deposit money before making a long journey and then withdraw it at the
other end, which is safer than carrying lots of cash.
There is no need to set up a national network of branches or
cash machines. M-banking schemes can he combined with microfinance loans,
extending access to credit and enabling users to establish a credit history.
Some schemes issue customers with debit cards linked to Their M-banking
accounts. All this has the potential to give the “unbanked” masses access to
financial services, and bring them into the formal economy.
What can governments do to foster M-banking? As with the
spread of mobile phones themselves, a lot depends on putting the right
regulations in place. They need to be tight enough to protect users and
discourage money laundering, but open enough to allow new services to emerge.
The existing banking model is both over-and under-protective, says Tim Lyman of
the World. Bank, because “it did not foresee the convergence of
telecommunications and financial services”.
In many countries only licensed banks are allowed to collect
deposits, Even if a mobile operator forms a partnership with a bank, its agents
may have to comply with banking rules covering everything from the height of the
counter to the installation. of alarms, Financial institutions may have to
provide detailed statements to the central bank every week, which is tricky for
organizations with agents in remote areas, Soule countries have rigid rules on
the document; demanded of anybody opening an aunt, which excludes many.
Some of these rules, which are based on an outdated view of
what banking looks like, should be relaxed. Allowing institutions other than
banks to enter the market makes sense, provided regulatory oversight and
consumer-protection measures are in place. Strict proof of identity may not be
needed for some customers, given the small sums involved. And existing
AI-barking schemes set a limit on the size of transactions that is low enough to
deter money-launderers but high enough to satisfy most customers. The regulatory
approach being taken in the Philippines provides a good model for other
countries. Rather than trying to work out the best rules in advance, which could
hamper innovation, the regulator is working closely with the banks and operators
behind the country's two M-banking schemes. That way the regulator can see what
is going on, so the schemes' operators get more flexibility. The experience will
feed into new banking regulations. Rules that are too tight will hinder
adoption; rules that are too lax could allow fraudsters to bring the whole idea
of branchless banking into disrepute. But if regulators strike the right
balance, M-banking may provide the next example of the mobile phone's
Answer the following questions on the passage, briefly and
in your own words:-10
Explain the benefits of using mobile phones.
List the improvements to financial services through
What are the drawbacks of this system?
Now is the Philippines model useful to us?
Explain clearly the contextual meaning of any three of the
following expressions in the passage:-6
Access to credit
To foster M-banking
Did not foresee
To deter money-launderers
Need to be tight enough to comply with
Strike the right balance.
3. Attempt any one of the following in about 250 words:-20
Draft a brief investigative report as Assistant Manager,
on your findings about the recent instances of conflict among your junior
staff members, Recommend solutions.
You have been asked to draft a proposal to sponsor a
sports event for specially disabled children on Republic Day, Draw up the
Offer financial advice to a party that has come in to
explore investment avenues. Point out the benefits of investing in Mutual,
Funds rather than Fixed Deposits.