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UN official challenges Nigeria on financial inclusion

by Business News Report

Princess Maxima, United Nations Secretary General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development said that all stakeholders must collaborate to ensure financial inclusion in Nigeria. Maxima said this while briefing newsmen on the outcome of her interaction with financial sector regulators in Abuja.
“Financial inclusion is important because it actually gives everybody, all Nigerians and all Nigerian enterprises, access to financial services. Not only credit, we are also talking about savings, insurance, pension. When we talk about insurance, it is about health insurance and affordable and quick payment system that could really lower the cost of doing business in this country,’’ she said. According to her, Nigeria needs to take the lead in Africa to enable other countries to learn.
“My message is: we need commitment to make this a reality and we need to coordinate our effort and to work together to make this happen,’’ she said. Maxima said that from her interaction with the various sectors, there was hope that the policy could be realised. She said that with good understanding, the national strategy paper would help create jobs and enhance economic growth if well implemented.
Maxima advised that government should put all measures in place to ensure that cost of doing business in Nigeria was reduced. Malam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, said N220 billion had been set aside for the implementation of the policy.
“It is actually a N220 billion fund and it will involve the CBN and other ministries. Right now, we are at the point where stakeholders are looking at it and giving their own input into the structure. Once it is through, we take it to the Economic Implementation Management Team and have the buy in of all parties and go on to launch it,’’ he said. He pledged the Federal Government’s commitment to ensuring effective financial inclusion in Nigeria.

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