DURBAN, May 5 (Xinhua) -- The Central Banks of Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania expressed their interest on Friday to partner with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to promote financial inclusion in East Africa.
At the 27th WEF on Africa in Durban, the WEF said they will launch the project soon. It will see policy-makers, private-sector providers of financial services and their clients and other relevant actors collaborating to ensure that more people access and use financial services.
The initiative will expand responsible data capture, non-traditional credit analytic and the micro, small and medium enterprises.
It will also focus on youth empowerment and gender gap. The youth and women would be encouraged to take part in entrepreneurship so that they could be involved in the financial inclusion. They would be offered opportunities to access the resources (including working capital) needed to initiate and sustain a small business.
Matthew Blake, head of Financial and Monetary System Initiative and member of the Executive Committee at the WEF said the move will promote financial inclusion.
"The goal of the project is to bring together a coalition of local and international organizations to catalyze investment and collective action towards building an inclusive financial system that promotes sustainable economic growth in the region," said Blake.
The project would reduce the gender gap by supporting the creation of innovative financial products and services that fully meet the unique needs of women.
According to a WEF report, East African countries have progressed in making financial access and usage a reality. In 2014, over 34 percent of adults in the region had bank accounts, up from 24 percent in 2011. East Africa has the highest penetration of mobile money accounts in the continent at 12 percent.