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Funding opportunity for financial inclusion projects in Africa

Funding opportunity for financial inclusion projects in Africa

​​​BRUSSELS, 12 December 2018 – WSBI African members are invited to apply for an innovative multi-donor fund, Africa Digital Financial Inclusion Facility (ADFI), to carry out projects aiming to advance financial inclusion across Africa through digital financial services.

The fund was established by the African Development Bank (AfDB), working with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and seeks to address the systematic barriers to digital financial services growth in Africa. ADFI's expected outcomes include advanced financial inclusion, minimized use of cash, accelerated achievement of poverty alleviation, health and education as well as gender equality.


Increased financial inclusion is an important catalyst for improved economic growth and productivity. It gives people the opportunity to save and invest, which leads to greater security and improved ability to weather economic shocks. Today, it is estimated that only 32% of adults across Africa have an account at a financial institution. This presents many challenges but also offers a real opportunity. Digital financial services offer immense potential in overcoming current development challenges. Studies and experience on the ground over the last 10 years show that, with the right investments in digital financial services, the obstacles to achieving financial inclusion for all can be overcome.


The AfDB aims to mobilize up to USD 100 million in donor funding with BMGF, and Agence Française de Développement and the Government of Luxembourg have already committed almost USD 40 million in grant funding. Donor resources will be extended in the form of grants and loans. Donor funding will be part of the AfDB's resources to result in total funding of up to USD 400 million over 10 years.


ADFI's beneficiaries will include banks and non-bank financial institutions, remittance and payment service providers, payment aggregators, electronic or mobile money issuers including mobile network operators, FinTech companies, postal services, consumer protection and competition authorities, central banks, telecommunications regulators, ministries, governments and regional economic organizations and entities.


WSBI African members are invited to provide WSBI with concept notes of 2 to 5 pages describing their project(s) in digital financial services using the current template. Submitted proposals will be sent to the Financial Inclusion and Intermediation division for discussion and further fine-tuning in line with eligibility criteria.

Proposals should be sent to Laurie Dufays –

Financial inclusion