Grand Bassam:French-speaking posts immerse themselves in digital financial services and financial inclusion
The coastal town of Grand Bassam (Côte d’Ivoire) hosted a workshop organized for managers of digital financial services and financial inclusion from French-speaking countries.
Organized by the Universal Postal Union (UPU) and funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the workshop was primarily aimed at providing a platform for participants to share experiences on digital financial services and financial inclusion.
The agenda equally gave pride of place to meetings with various financial institutions, mobile financial services players and other financial technologies providers, with the ultimate goal of enabling designated operators to further explore the process of digitalizing their financial services.
During the opening ceremony presided by the representative of the Minister of Digital Economy, Communications and Posts of Côte d’Ivoire in the presence of the Directors General of the Regulatory Authority and the Post, a message by the Secretary General of the Pan African Postal Union (PAPU) was delivered to participants. Financial inclusion was highlighted as a top priority and a key driver of sustainable growth for all across the African continent. Moreover, digital financial inclusion can be a game-changer for unserved or underserved low-income households. Hence the need for Africa’s posts to come to grips with the issue and address it properly.
The Secretary General of PAPU expressed the hope that at the conclusion of these deliberations, participants will be fully equipped to propose realistic action plans to their respective organizations, which can be swiftly implemented to give new impetus to inclusive socioeconomic development efforts across the continent.
As the curtains came down on the deliberations, participants concluded that digitalization is crucial to fostering financial inclusion. This was in line with the recommendation by the workshop facilitators, Salam Sanfo (UPU Regional Coordinator for West Africa) and Nils Clotteau (UPU), on the need to quickly digest the lessons learnt in Grand Bassam, making sure that once they return to their respective organizations, they will propose realistic action plans that can be promptly implemented.
A similar workshop will be held in Harare (Zimbabwe) for postal administrations of English-speaking countries.