Activities to mark the annual savings week start today ahead of the World Savings Day on October 31. This year, the day will be celebrated under the them “Save now for a better future”.
Amb. Claver Gatete, the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, said the day is aimed at reminding and educating the public about the importance of savings and to be responsible for their financial future in particular and the country’s economy in general.
Gatete said Rwanda’s current gross savings ratio to GDP is 15.3 per cent which is very low.
“This far below adequate levels, so we need to change our mentality and embrace the savings culture,” he said yesterday.
Kampeta Sayinzoga, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning Permanent Secretary and Secretary to the Treasury, said stakeholders will engage in campaigns to raise awareness on different financial products offered by banks and other financial institutions over the next six days as part of the activities to mark the World Savings Day.
“The savings accumulated by individuals, enterprises and government are key to achieving sustainable growth,” she explained.
It is also aimed at creating an avenue for the public to interact with financial services providers to assess the needs of clients, according to Peter Rwema, the director of programmes at the Association of Microfinance Institutions Rwanda (AMIR).
Rwanda is targeting 80 per cent financial inclusion by 2017.
Sector players have recently decried the poor savings culture and financial illiteracy as threats to the sector’s performance.
Meanwhile, microfinance institutions (MFIs) with the best savings products will next week be recognised to encourage innovation and client-focused products in the sector, Rita Ngarambe, the executive secretary AMIR), told The New Times on Thursday.
She said AMIR has been assessing all MFIs and Saccos across the country in the past few weeks to select the best performers in terms of their savings products for adults and children.