UN to support Ethiopia's financial planning, digitalization efforts

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-17 00:21:00|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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ADDIS ABABA, May 16 (Xinhua) -- United Nations on Thursday vowed to support the Ethiopian government's efforts through strategic planning and expertise, mainly in the financial and digitalization endeavors.

The statement was made by Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, who is also the UN Secretary-General's Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development, during her meeting with Ethiopia's Minister of Finance Ahmed Shade on Thursday.

"During the discussion, Queen Maxima vowed to support the Ethiopian government through strategic planning, mainly by assigning qualified financial and planning experts," the Ethiopian Ministry of Finance said in a statement on Thursday.

The queen, who is currently in Ethiopia as part of a three-day visit that aimed to promote access to financial services in the East African country, envisaged to promote digital applications in Ethiopia's financial services, as well as the development of digital national identification (ID) system.

On Wednesday, Maxima, during her meeting with the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, also stressed that "the timing of the changes taking place in the country are crucial."

"She lauded the changes in liberalization and privatization of various sectors, particularly telecom as impressive in facilitating financial inclusion," the Ethiopian Prime Minister's office said in a statement late Wednesday.

Ahmed shared key priorities of the Ethiopian government "in laying the critical foundation for structural changes to enable technology enhance inclusive financing," the statement read.

Maxima reiterated the UN's continued support to the Ethiopian government's efforts towards digitalization.

Maxima, who also met with Ethiopia's Minister of Innovation and Technology Getahun Mekuria as part of her ongoing visit to Ethiopia, stressed the UN's readiness to provide technical, knowledge, as well as advisory support.

Maxima, expressing her concern regarding internet speed and information security, also urged the Ethiopian government to give particular emphasis to rural communities, according to the Ethiopian Ministry of Innovation and Technology.

The Netherlands queen has been the UN Secretary-General's Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development since 2009.