September 10, 2016
THE central bank and its stakeholders had to set a number of goals and targets to help steer its work in promoting financial inclusion in Fiji, Reserve Bank of Fiji’s manager corporate communication Melvin Singh says.
“These goals and targets are all geared towards achieving the 2020 Money Pacific Regional Goals,” Singh told participants of the 2016 Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) Global Policy Forum at the Sheraton Resort on Denarau yesterday.
He said the goals and targets included integrating financial education into the core school curricula, targeting half the number of households currently without access to financial services, all adults to have access to financial education and simple and transparent consumer protection to be in place.
He also highlighted that RBF’s 2010-2020 medium term strategy had included reaching 150,000 unbanked Fijians, the need for an enabling and conducive regulatory environment, the need for financial education and literacy among Fijians, the promotion of microfinance to encourage entrepreneurship and the accessibility and reliability of data collection.
“In 2009, Fiji joined other Pacific Island central bank governors in committing to have financial inclusion as an integral part of the central bank’s goals for sustainable and equitable economic growth in the region.”
He said the event was a milestone for the RBF as it marked the bank’s decision to play a lead role in driving the financial inclusion agenda in Fiji.
“From the outset, it was clear that the achievements for Fiji’s financial inclusion goals required buy-in from all stakeholders and RBF has since focused on forming effective partnerships with key local and international stakeholders,” he said.
Mr Singh said RBF’s key partners in its financial inclusion work in Fiji included AFI, the National Financial Inclusion Taskforce and its four working groups, the Pacific Islands Regional Initiative (PIRI) and the Pacific Financial Inclusion Program.
Mr Singh had earlier pointed out that Fiji’s financial inclusion journey officially began in 2008 after the ratification of the Coombs Declaration.