September 17, 2021 / 12:44 PM / Oluwakemi Enitan Falayo for WebTV / Header Image
Credit: Global Citizen
At the just-concluded 14th annual banking and finance conference organized by Chartered Institute of Bankers in Nigeria (CIBN) Mrs. Amina J. Mohammed, the UN Deputy Secretary-General, one of the resource persons, provided her views on "The Role of Banks in Supporting Nigeria's Economic Recovery".
According to her, there are three (3) areas that the banks should continue to explore and improve their interventions, which include;
Serving Customers Better With a Dynamic Range of Product and Services
With the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the gradual recovery from the economic recession, the UN Deputy Secretary-General called on the banks to improve their service delivery to customers.
She stated that this means deploying a range of financial products and services, leveraging innovation and technology to address financial inclusion and economic empowerment issues.
She advised the financial institutions to offer dynamic financial products tailored to the Nigerian business ecosystem's needs, which will help stimulate economic activities and lift millions of Nigerians from poverty.
Adopting a New Operating Model to Drive Efficiency and Inclusion
Speaking further, she called on the Financial Services industry to adopt robust operating models that would encourage inclusion covering gender diversity, empowering youths and entrepreneurs.
The initiative would involve deploying technology to improve efficiency and provide financial services that are accessible and affordable.
Focusing on Enabling Sustainable Development Investing
With increasing environmental challenges, Mohammed, who doubles as the Chairperson of the UN Sustainable Development Group, called on the financial services industry to collaborate with the domestic capital market to develop sustainable investment financing initiatives.
Speaking further, she called for sustained reforms that would drive an advanced financial services industry that works for the citizens, like introducing the BVN (bank verification number) and guidelines on mobile money (working towards a cashless economy).
Summing up, she believed now is the time to invest strategically in sectors that can boost the economy like social protection, gender equality and decent green jobs. According to her, the banking and finance sector in the African region will play a crucial role in facilitating trade for the continental market of 1.2bn people.