22 December 2017

Tanzania: Outgoing BOT Boss Calls for Financial Inclusion

Dar es Salaam — The government has been urged to set up conducive infrastructure, which will absorb 28 per cent of Tanzanians who have are unable to access financial services.

The call targets the Tanzanians from rural areas, mainly women, youth and small scale farmers.

The outgoing Bank of Tanzania (BoT) governor, Prof Benno Ndulu (pictured), said this during the launch of the Second National Financial Inclusion Framework 2018-2022. Prof Ndulu said while Tanzania has made great strides in attaining financial inclusion, there are still major challenges, which must be addressed to close the gap between financial services distribution needs, for many services do not meet customer needs.

"We have been able to bridge financial inclusion, which has increased to 86 per cent this year from 26 per cent in 2012. The number of Tanzanians utilising financial services has increased six times to 65 per cent in 2017 compared to 11 per cent in 2006," he said.

He said while the country has achieved a lot in financial inclusion, there are challenges including high loan interest rates and services, which do not meet customer needs while for the customer side, they lack sustainable income and identification records.

For his part, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa said the government was looking forward to speeding up the registration of national identification cards to enable more Tanzanians access financial services.

He said that the records are important when it comes to loans and other important financial services.

In another development, he said in order for the Tanzanians to attain growth, they need to adopt a culture of saving, which has been cited as the foundation for development at both individual and national levels.

He said while the country has made great strides in attaining the financial inclusion for Tanzanians from 26 per cent in 2012 to 86 per cent in 2017, the level of saving still stands at 43 per cent, stressing that the government plans to take it to 60 per cent by 2022.

"There is a need to educate Tanzanians on the importance of saving for their own future. To attain this, banks should put up an incentive by issuing an interest to people who save annually," he said.


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