The World Bank Group has invested US$2.25 million in Rwanda to drive Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Finance; Financial Consumer Protection; Financial Literacy; Payment Systems, and Financial Infrastructure according to the government’s Financial Sector Development Plan, FSDPII.
According to the World Bank, Rwanda has made remarkable progress in financial inclusion in recent years which saw the proportion of adults with financial access, both formal and informal, increase from 47% to 72% between 2008 and 2012. However, the country wants to raise financial inclusion to 90% by 2020 therefore the need to step up mobilization.
“Rwanda has set an ambitious objective of reaching 80% of formal financial inclusion by 2017, and I am pleased to say that significant progress has already been made towards achieving this target.” said John Rwangombwa, Governor, National Bank of Rwanda.
World Bank will therefore support Rwanda to achieve its financial inclusion goal, with a particular focus on improving access, usage and quality of financial services, especially for underserved and low-income populations in rural areas.
“Rwanda is the first country in Sub-Saharan Africa and one of two globally to benefit from this program. It will help the country meet its ambitious financial inclusion goal through technical assistance, advisory services, and capacity building for far-reaching policy and regulatory reforms as well as critical financial infrastructure development.” said Bertrand Badré, Managing Director and World Bank Group Chief Financial Officer.
The Financial Inclusion Support Framework (FISF) for Rwanda is the latest addition to the Bank Group’s engagement in Rwanda. The Bank Group is committed to continue providing support for the development of Rwanda’s financial sector in line with the new Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Rwanda. The World Bank is currently working with the National Bank of Rwanda to strengthen financial stability with a US$2 million trust fund financed by the Financial Sector Reform and Strengthening Initiative (FIRST). In addition, the International Financial Corporation (IFC) is expected to invest US$20 million for a four year period to support financial and private sector development in Rwanda.
“Access to affordable financial services can make a big difference in people’s lives. It can help them to take better charge of their future. I am very proud that the Netherlands supports this important program”, said Leoni Cuelenaere, Ambassador, Netherlands.