October 14, 2019 / 07:22 PM / Bukola Akinyele for Proshare WebTV / Header Image Credit: Woodgreen
Nigeria's Financial Exclusion rate has dropped from 46.3% to the current 36.8 %, representing a 10.2% reduction.
The Head, Financial Inclusion Strategy for the Central Bank of Nigeria Mr. Joseph Attah disclosed this at the recent South-South Zonal forum in Port Harcourt, for Financial Services Agents, powered by Enhancing Financial and Innovation Access, EFINA in collaboration with the Shared Expansion Network Facility, SANEF.
Mr. Attah said the ambitious goal of achieving the required 20% financial exclusion rate by 2020 was intact and a top priority for the CBN and other financial sector actors.
The CBN Official informed the stakeholders that it was looking at also deepening other financial products in the country like micro-insurance, savings credit, insurance and payment services through financial service agents.
According to him, Finance was critical to national development, and nations develop faster when there is increased financial penetration.
Speaking further, Mr. Attah said the CBN was planning an "Account Opening Week" for Nigerians that will increase financial literacy, which will in turn improve financial inclusion.
Attah also noted that Youth Corp members would be engaged to expand the scope of the financial literacy campaign in the country.
He said the CBN would work with SANEF to support the activities of financial services agents, who are critical to financial inclusion in the country.
In 2012, the Central Bank of Nigeria adopted the National Financial Inclusion Strategy, NFIS, which articulated the demand-side, supply-side and regulatory barriers to financial inclusion, identified areas of focus, set targets, determined key performance indicators (KPIs) and established the implementation structure.
The NFIS focuses on four strategic areas of agency banking, mobile banking/mobile payments, linkage models and client empowerment. Four priority areas for guideline and framework development include Tiered Know-your Customer (T-KYC) regulations, agent banking regulations, national financial literacy strategy and consumer protection.
The NFIS guideline reviewed in 2018, led to the following five (5) priorities that will serve as action points;