Queen Máxima gives opening speech at conference on financial education held by the Joint Committee of the European Supervisory Authorities

On Tuesday 1 February Her Majesty Queen Máxima will give the opening speech at the virtual conference on financial education and literacy held by the Joint Committee of the three European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs): the European Banking Authority (EBA), the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). Queen Máxima will be speaking in her capacity as honorary chair of the Money Wise platform and as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA).

The goal of the conference, entitled ‘Consumers in financial services: how to enhance their financial education’, is to promote the coordination of European financial education and financial literacy initiatives and improve alignment with actual financial developments. Queen Máxima will shed light on what exactly financial health entails and why it should be a policy priority. She will also offer policy makers and supervisory authorities suggestions for an effective approach to advancing financial health.

In mid-September 2021 the Financial Health Working Group, launched by Queen Máxima in her capacity as UNSGSA, presented a report that defined financial health as the extent to which a person or family can meet their short-term financial obligations and needs, has the resilience to absorb financial shocks, is on track to reach their financial goals (e.g. saving for education) and feels secure in their financial future. Queen Máxima sees good financial health as the desired result of financial education, which is intended to help people make smart decisions with their money and set achievable financial goals for the future.

Queen Máxima often speaks within European contexts about financial education. In 2021 she spoke at the launch of the joint financial literacy project between the European Commission and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). In 2016 she addressed the European Banking Federation on increasing financial awareness and self-reliance, and in 2015 she attended a related working dinner in Brussels.

Queen Máxima has been the honorary chair of the Money Wise platform since 2010. In addition, since 2009 she has held the position of UNSGSA and as such has been working worldwide to make financial services accessible to everyone, including low-income groups and small and medium-sized enterprises.