Financial Inclusion spurs sustainable economic growth and development

Facilitating access and usage of financial services by marginalized communities is key to sustainable economic growth and development, Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion Minister, Prof Mthuli Ncube has said.

He made the remarks when he officially opened the Maiden Annual Financial Inclusion Conference, which ran under the theme: “Leveraging Innovative Technologies for Financial Inclusion and Sustainability: From Access to Usage”.

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) organised the conference, which ran from 4-5 December 2023, and drew participation from various stakeholders, among them government ministries, fellow financial sector regulators, financial service providers, academia, and non-governmental organisations.

Prof Ncube underscored the government’s commitment to financial inclusion in line with the mantra: “Leaving No One and No Place Behind”.

“The conference thus, provides a platform for policymakers, regulators, financial service providers, mobile network operators, and development partners to accelerate access to, and usage of financial services by the marginalised groups,” said Prof Ncube.

“I have no doubt that this, anchored on our fiscal and monetary measures to promote the financial sector and macro-economic stability, will result in poverty reduction, employment creation, entrepreneurship development, improved livelihoods, and overall sustainable economic growth and development.”

RBZ Governor, Dr John Mangudya in a speech read on his behalf by Deputy Governor, Dr Jesimen Chipika, said financial inclusion is a key enabler to sustainable and inclusive economic development.

“Financial inclusion is not just a moral imperative but remains a key priority in promoting sustainable livelihoods, wealth, and employment creation. It also facilitates gender equality in line with the country’s vision of an “Upper Middle-Income Economy” by 2030,” said Dr Mangudya.

IPEC Public Relations Manager, Mr Lloyd Gumbo presented on inclusive insurance where he emphasised the importance of risk management through insurance.