Panel on the digital revolution for financial inclusion. From left to right: Ahmed Armand Dosso from BCEAO, Stefan Nalletamby from the African Development Bank, Ivan James Ssettimba from the Alliance for Financial Inclusion and Alex Sea from the Africa Fintech Network
ABIDJAN, 10 December 2019 – WSBI member banks in Africa, policymakers, regulators, supervisors, microfinance institutions and leaders from fintech and startup industries gathered on 3-4 December for a two-day conference on digital financial inclusion. Organised by WSBI and hosted in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, the event garnered over 60 participants from 14 African countries.
Themed Digital financial inclusion: successful ways forward, the event was an opportunity to hear more about the regional financial inclusion agenda from delegates of the African Development Bank, the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO), the African Union and the Alliance for Financial Inclusion.
The two-day conference combined panel discussions, interactive group work and presentations on successful digital financial solutions for poorly or non-served populations. Ranging from regulatory aspects to topics such as financial education, rural finance, customer centricity, agency banking, nano savings products and digital nano loans, the event showcased an array of examples from the region on how to develop digital products and services in favour of financial inclusion.
Participants from WSBI membership also enjoyed a study visit to the Banque Populaire de Côte d'Ivoire, where bank representatives gave a presentation on their recent transformation, future strategy and their experience in serving customers in rural and remote locations.
WSBI members visit Banque Populaire de Côte
WSBI assists members in their strategy to increase financial inclusion within their communities. As one of the initial Coalition Partners, WSBI is proud to have substantially contributed to the World Bank Group's Universal Financial Access (UFA) 2020 Goal. On 31 December 2018, the total number of clients reached by WSBI members amounted to 1.733 billion, exceeding the commitment of 1.7 billion customers. WSBI members have expanded the number of new clients by 329 million since 2014.
Digitisation and innovation, crucial elements of financial inclusion, are also high on WSBI's agenda. Keeping pace with the accelerating speed of digitisation is a challenge for all banks and regulators. Nevertheless, it offers an unparalleled opportunity to fulfil the savings and retail banking mission even more effectively. Digitisation makes it possible to remain close to the customers and to serve customers with low-average balances on their accounts in a profitable way.
WSBI assists its members in fostering digitisation and adapting to changes in the banking industry through knowledge sharing, experience exchange and various events, such as the conference on digital financial inclusion in Abidjan.
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