Rwanda is among more than 60 countries that have formed a new global alliance to increase access to financial services in the developing world.
At the official launch of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) in Nairobi on Monday, a coalition of countries from the developing world committed to make savings accounts, insurance, and other financial services available to their populations.
In an interview with Business Times ,François Kanimba , the Governor Central Bank confirmed Rwanda’s participation in the meeting and revealed that the Central Bank had officially joined the alliance earlier this year (April).
“There are no direct monetary benefits of joining; the only benefit is sharing information on the development of the financial system.
It is a forum where people meet and discuss,” Kanimba said, explaining that the alliance is not a financial institution.
AFI’s global network will enable developing countries to share knowledge so they can more effectively develop and implement policies designed to expand access to financial services.
“While many of the smartest policies to expand financial access have come from developing countries – such as mobile phone money transfer services in Kenya and agent banking in Brazil – knowledge of these solutions is scattered in pockets around the globe,’” the statement reads in part.
“The unique aspect of AFI is that it puts us members in the driver’s seat to identify and create solutions to increase the availability and choices of financial services in our own countries,” said Tarisa Watanagase, governor of the Bank of Thailand and AFI member in a press statement published on AFI website.
“Since we understand our countries’ circumstances better than outside organizations, AFI creates an exceptional forum for us to share policies that work and learn from other policymakers about solutions that work for them,”Watanagase said.
Conclusions from drawn from the three-day meeting will inform financial sector reforms, which members can consider for implementation in their nations.
Based in Bangkok, Thailand, AFI is managed on behalf of its members by the German development organization Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH and supported with a US$35 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
AFI is a global network of central banks and other policymaking bodies in over 60 developing countries.
AFI provides its members with a learning platform for peer to peer knowledge exchange on financial inclusion policies that work, and grants to help implement them.