The assistant Executive Director of Alliance for Financial Inclusion, Norbert Mumba has stressed the need to embrace digital financial services to be pushed to all adult Ugandans, explaining that it will further help to reduce the number of adult people that are still unbanked in Uganda.
Mumba stated this during the launch of a five-year National Financial Inclusion Strategy by the Bank of Uganda at Serena Hotel on Thursday.
He said that since the Bank of Uganda embarked on strategies of improving financial services through the Financial Inclusion Project (2011-2016), there have been giant strides in the sector.
Mumba, who delivered the keynote address at the launch, said the percentage of Ugandans with access to banking services has increased incredibly to 39% but stressed that new challenges require more government support towards the implementation of the policy as well as for the players to be able to embrace digital financial strategies.
The plan, which has been dubbed ‘ambitious and comprehensive’ aims at reducing financial exclusion from 15%-5% by 2022.
“The benefits are beyond the poor because strategies like mobile technology took space as countries looked at financial inclusion,” he noted. But he advocated for the reduction of the gender gap that currently is at 44% to men and 36% to women in terms of access to financial services.
He said that 49.6% of respondents in Uganda noted that not enough money to invest is not the reason people don’t invest but the lack of adequate information thus a need to increase financial education.
While discussing strategies to further achieve financial inclusion, the governor Bank of Uganda, Emmanuel Mutebile said there are three major stakeholders in the policy, which include financial and technology providers, the partners and experts.
“Financial inclusion is a profitable business opportunity and an enabler of development which everyone must embrace,” Mutebile said.
The National Financial Inclusion Strategy targets to increase credit bureau coverage from 6%-40%, reduce financial exclusion from 15%-5% as well as increasing the percentage of women and youth accessing quality financial services among others. These targets are set to be met by 2022.