In a bid to support savings culture in the country, Fina Bank has launched a new savings account “Fina Saver” that will encourage customers with such accounts to earn impressive interest rates.
The move follows, government campaign launched last week aimed at increasing national savings that have been consistently negative, varying in a range between 1 percent and -3 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
While the account demands no minimum opening balance, interest is payable on only balances of Rwf50, 000 and above.
In an interview with Business Times on Thursday, Eugene Murigande, the Head of Consumer Banking noted that in recognition for the need to promote savings culture in the country , his institution is offering impressive interest rates on the account in a bid to attract savings.
“As a nation we need to increase our savings to achieve development. It is very important for our clients and everybody to save as it will boost financial security,” Murigande said, pointing out the need to save at least one percent of one’s gross salary.
“It is always advised to have six months of your gross salary saved somewhere in case you lose a job some or you fall sick. Saving is a good practice that as a nation we need to develop,”
At nine percent, according to Murigande Fina Bank is paying half (50 percent) of the base lending rate on the minimum monthly cleared balance in order to attract more savings.
Currently Fina bank’s lending rate is 18 percent.
“Nobody is currently giving the same on the market. This is very good for the bank and the client,” he said, arguing that the bank’s objective is to boost savings in the country.
Murigande also mentioned that in the long run the bank will develop products that will enable savers to use savings as collateral after building a relationship with the bank.
“This can help the bank and community to grow. We have to create that culture of savings - how ever little you make, you can save.”
One withdrawal per month is free of charge while additional withdraws in the same month will attract a fee of Rwf1000.
The Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS) has set a target of achieving a gross national savings of 18 percent of GDP to attain a gross national investment target of 30 percent of GDP.
Currently FINA Bank is operating 7 branches around the country, with the latest addition being Muhanga branch that was opened last week.