This title is part of an initiative by the World Bank to develop standard indicators to measure the performance and soundness of the financial sector in the South Asia region and help pinpoint where performance is strong and where improvements are most needed. Phases I, II, and III, completed
with active support and assistance from regulatory authorities in South Asia, compiled a standard set of finance indicators for five countries: Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. This first formally published volume encompasses Phase IV of the study, which updates all indicators
under the four categories of access to finance, performance and efficiency, stability, and corporate governance, and adds two new categories: capital market developments, and market concentration and competitiveness. The addition of these measures provides a new and more holistic perspective
on getting finance in South Asia, and also helps improve our understanding of the financial systems in South Asian countries.Countries in South Asia have undertaken reforms to reduce government ownership of financial institutions, bring prudential regulations in line with international norms,
and strengthen banking supervision. These reforms have borne results. This volume shows that commercial banks in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka generally expanded access to finance and improved their performance and efficiency, stability, corporate governance, and market
concentration and competitiveness over the period from 2001 to 2006. But results vary widely across and even within these areas, as shown by the countries' rankings on the indicators, which show that, with the notable exception of India, South Asian domestic debt markets are still at an early
stage of development.