Queen Máxima speaks online at International Financial Inclusion Conference

This morning, Thursday 24 November, Her Majesty Queen Máxima is speaking online at the Financial Inclusion Conference, IFIC22, which is being held in Nigeria. A new national strategy for financial inclusion (NSFI) is being launched at the conference, with the objective of ensuring that 95% of the adult population have access to digital financial services. Queen Máxima is speaking in her capacity as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA).

The conference is being organised by the Nigerian National Committee for Financial Inclusion. In addition to the new NSFI, a strategy for National Fintech is also being presented. Fintech is a key part of good access to safe and affordable digital financial services. According to the World Bank’s Global Findex 2021, 45% of adults in Nigeria now have a bank account. Woman are under-represented, lagging 20% behind men. This is why the country has devised an action plan to make digital banking easier for women by expanding the network of bank agents. 

In her speech Queen Máxima will address the importance of developing digital identity documents. Not only in the interests of safe access to financial services, but also for better service provision in the healthcare and education sectors. She will also discuss the role of financial service providers in helping people in more remote areas to access digital financial services. Research conducted by the World Bank and the IMF showed that people have better prospects of economic and social development if they have access to a current or savings account, insurance policies, loans and digital payments.

Other speakers at the hybrid conference include Minister of Federal Capital Territory Alhaji Mohammed Musa Bello, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele and Deputy Governor of the CBN Aishah Ahmad. Participants include Nigerian government representatives, representatives of regulatory bodies and financial services providers from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya and Tanzania and development partners including the Alliance for Financial Inclusion and the Financial Alliance for Women. 

Queen Máxima previously visited Nigeria in her capacity as UNSGSA in 2017 and 2012.

Government Information Service, no. 312