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VP says financial inclusion key in economic recovery plan

According to Osinbajo, financial inclusiveness is important for development of the individual, community and country.

He stated this while hosting Queen Maxima of Netherlands who is also the UN Secretary General’s Special Advocate for inclusive finance for development.

“Of cause financial inclusion is absolutely important for us as an economy.

“We need to be able to ensure that all of our people, wherever they live, no matter how far away they are can be reached with financial products; have bank accounts.

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“Payments can be made to them and they also can make payments; in other words they can participate in the entire financial architecture that the country offers and even that the international community offers.

“And that really is important for development, for their development as individuals and as communities.’’

The Vice President acknowledged the Queen’s second visit to the country to find out how far the country had gone with its financial inclusion plans and projects.

Responding, Queen Maxima said that “Nigeria is a country of enormous potential where financial inclusion should be playing great role for your development.’’

The Queen stated that having access to savings, insurance payment credit could make the people move out of poverty and invest in small businesses, create income, employ people and save for the rainy day.

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“Financial inclusiveness is a key element to support the economic growth recovery plan being championed by you.

“Since 2008 Nigeria has actually made progress growing from 23 per cent to 48 per cent of financial inclusion.

“But still more than half of Nigerians have to deal without very basic financial services that you and I rely on every day.

“And in the last couple of years progress has been stalled and there is a moment to renew this commitment and leadership on financial inclusion,’’ she added.

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The Queen urged Nigeria to maximize the use of mobile money and make it sustainable, responsive and safe for all Nigerians.

According to her the country has many potentials in that respect while many countries have already achieved it.

She said only two per cent of Nigerians could use mobile money in contrast to 70 per cent in Ghana and higher numbers in other parts of the world.

She stressed the need for strong ICT systems and assured that the UN would assist the country build a strong financial inclusive system.

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