Nigeria will meet the 80 percent financial inclusion target by next year ending, experts in the financial sector have said.
Speaking at the Financial Services Agents Forum in Abuja yesterday, officials of the Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF), Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said millions of low income and unserved Nigerians would have access to financial access by the end of this year.
The forum, which was jointly organised by SANEF and EFInA with support of CBN, had hundreds of agency banking operators from across the country in attendance.
The Head, Financial Inclusion Secretariat, CBN, Joseph Attah, who was represented by an official in the bank, Mr Stephen Abore, said, "To spur all stakeholders to action and engineer a measurable path towards achievement, the financial inclusion Secretariat has outlined a number of workable assumptions around SANEF's target of 500,000 agents by 2020.
He said though 36.6m Nigerians were still without access to financial services, the CBN and other stakeholders were making serious efforts to reduce this number.
SANEF's head of distribution and engagement, Uche Uzoebo said thousands of agents were being signed on every day to drive the financial inclusion.
She said stakeholders in the financial sector were jointly working to bring in more rural dwellers on board across the country.
When this is done, she said, poverty would be reduced and the country's GDP would be increased.
On his part, EFInA's programme Specialist (Agent Network), Henry Chukwu said 63.2 % of the 80 % financial inclusion target had been achieved.