62pc women at finance training – Fiji Times

July 12, 2017

AS MANY as 7174 adults received financial literary training last year, out of which 62 per cent were women.

This was revealed in the Financial Inclusion Report 2016, which stated that about 44 per cent of the training was in rural areas.

It said compared with 2015, the numbers were much lower (2015: 14,925 adults received training, 50 per cent were women).

According to the report, the devastating effects of Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston in February 2016 resulted in the lower outreach as stakeholders’ and communities’ efforts focused on rebuilding.

Meanwhile, in 2016, 146 seasonal workers received financial literacy training prior to their departure for Australia or New Zealand organised by the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations.

The report stated that there was an additional 660 women market vendors who received training through the United Nations Markets for Change project.

The report was released recently by the National Financial Inclusion Taskforce (NFIT) and the Reserve Bank of Fiji.

The NFIT was established in February 2010 after recommendations from the 2009 National Microfinance Workshop, co-hosted by the RBF and the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme (PFIP).

Former RBF governor and NFIT chairperson Barry Whiteside said like many other developing countries, Fiji fully embraced financial inclusion and the catalytic effect it had in creating employment, reducing poverty and contributing to sustainable economic growth.

Mr Whiteside said an inclusive financial system enabled all members of society, particularly the marginalised, to receive and use affordable and appropriate financial services to improve their livelihood.

He said the 2016 Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) Global Policy Forum also provided an opportunity for its stakeholders to participate and learn from other countries’ experiences in developing an inclusive financial system.

“A major highlight was the Broadway-style performance of Fiji’s Financial Inclusion Journey by the internationally recognised Oceania Dance Theatre and Pasifika Voices who thrilled the audience with an entertaining cultural experience of songs and dances,” Mr Whiteside said. “We have learned that we must be creative and innovative in delivering our message of financial inclusion to different target groups.”

The report stated that the Financial Literacy Working Group was established to raise awareness among the public on the importance of financial literacy and the group works through collaboration with its stakeholders under the three broad themes: (1) improving financial competencies through education in the school curriculum; (2) building adult financial competency through better co-ordination and increase public and private sector support; and (3) enhancing financial education awareness and consumer empowerment.