Source: The National,Monday, February 11, 2013
People’s Micro Bank was granted a licence on Jan 15.
“People’s Micro Bank Ltd was licenced under the Banks and Financial Institutions Act 2000, as a licenced financial institution operating as a microbank,” Bakani said.
“The granting of this licence reflects the government’s commitment to make financial services accessible to the rural population through vehicles like microfinance institutions.”
Bakani, in welcoming the board of the new licence holder last Friday, said the Central Bank’s financial inclusion initiatives, which were in support of the Governments Vision 2050 objective for a financially inclusive population, through wealth-creation to reduce poverty.
“Its priorities include the creation of a National Centre for Financial Inclusion (NCFI) to conduct financial literacy training for the unbanked population in the rural and urban areas, develop capacity building programmes for microfinance institutions, develop an appropriate regulatory framework for supervision of MFIs and facilitate access to finance for small to medium enterprises (SMEs) through a risk share facility,” he said.
“The Central Bank has prioritised financial inclusion as one of its key objectives and is working very closely with other partners to achieve it.
“The priority areas included: continuous promotion of developments in the microfinance sector; the roll out of mobile and electronic banking; advocacy on financial literacy and financial education; and improvement of the national payment system.”
Bakani stressed that having a financially literate population was the key to drive other initiatives.
“If people understand the basics of finance and how one can create wealth with it, it will enable them to make good decisions on where and how to save or invest,” he said.
“People’s Micro Bank Ltd should make good use of its licence to strategically move it forward and is better placed to assist people in rural areas currently underserved in terms of accessing financial services.”
Bakani also welcomed the new entity to partner the bank in its efforts to reach out to the 85% of the population that was unbanked or underserved.