Leaders’ perspectives

Leaders’ Perspectives is a series of articles written by the heads of AFI member institutions that feature insight on effective solutions that address national and regional financial inclusion implementation challenges.

We invite our heads of institutions to share opinions, ideas and thoughts to help shape the global discourse on how to reach the remaining 1.4 billion unbanked.

Honduras

Marcio Sierra Discua

President, National Commission of Banks and Insurance of Honduras

Since Hondurans elected their first female President, the principle of gender equality has come to the forefront of national efforts to achieve comprehensive, inclusive and sustainable economic development.-Read More

North Macedonia

Anita Angelovska Bezhoska

Governor, National Bank of the Republic of North Macedonia

The Governor of the National Bank provides an overview of the state of financial inclusion in the country, and NBRNM’s work to support underserved and vulnerable groups.-Read More

Eswatini

Felicia Dlamini-Kunene

Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Eswatini

From 20-23 May, AFI’s Working Groups will be meeting in Mbabane, Eswatini to discuss digital financial services, global standards and proportionality and financial inclusion strategies. Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Eswatini, Felicia Dlamini-Kunene gives us her take on the country’s growing FinTech industry and its impact on financial inclusion.-Read More

Ecuador

Margarita Hernández Naranjo

Superintendente de Economía Popular y Solidaria

By aligning a commitment to social and environmental responsibility in the financial system, with the goal to financially include women, countries can make real progress on both fronts. -Read More

Armenia

Martin Galstyan

Governor of the Central Bank of Armenia

Armenia’s Sustainable Finance Roadmap provides a blueprint of Central Bank expectations and planned actions regarding the incorporation of environmental, climate, social and governance risks into financial market processes.-Read More

Mozambique

Rogerio Lucas Zandamela

Governor of Banco de Moçambique

Technology has been at the forefront of Africa's financial inclusion success. But, unless used responsibly, technology can also harm more than it helps, says Rogerio Lucas Zandamela, Governor of Banco de Moçambique.-Read More

Lesotho

Emmanuel Maluke Letete

Governor of the Central Bank of Lesotho

The Central Bank of Lesotho has been an AFI member for over a decade. Since then, the country has reached 90 percent financial inclusion. The Governor of the Central Bank of Lesotho, Emmanuel Maluke Letete, says it all comes down to one thing -Read More

Papua New Guinea

Elizabeth Genia

Acting Governor, Bank of Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea is one of the ten most vulnerable countries in the world to the risk of climate change. The human suffering which climate disasters bring, the displacement of people and destruction of livelihoods, is therefore never far from our minds. Building resilience to climate impacts is a top policy priority, and one where inclusive green finance (IGF) is playing a central role.-Read More

Senegal

Mame Aby Seye

General Delegate for Entrepreneurship, General Delegation for Rapid Entrepreneurship of Women and Youth

Digitalization is allowing the General Delegation for Rapid Entrepreneurship of Women and Youth (DER/FJ) to reach women entrepreneurs across all 46 departments and 550 communes of Senegal. Through using electronic wallets, young women are accessing financing and repay loans.-Read More

Maldives

Mariyam Hussain Didi

Assistant Governor of the Maldives Monetary Authority

As an archipelagic state, the Maldives has made significant strides in overcoming the infrastructural and logistical barriers to delivering basic financial services to its people. Mariyam Hussain Didi, Assistant Governor of the Maldives Monetary Authority, explains what’s behind the country’s success so far. -Read More

Mongolia

Bayarsaikhan Dembereldash

Financial Regulatory Commission Chairman

The Financial Regulatory Commission of Mongolia has partnered with AFI to embrace the potential solutions presented by Inclusive Green Finance, particularly for non-bank financial institutions and MSMEs.-Read More

The Gambia

Buah Saidy

Governor, Central Bank of The Gambia

In the second part of the interview, Governor Siady focuses on NFIS goals, how digital financial services can support these goals and the role of the central bank in the AFI network.-Read More

The Gambia

Buah Saidy

Governor, Central Bank of The Gambia

We talked to Governor Buah Saidy, Central Bank of The Gambia, to learn about the central bank’s policies that are expected to bring up to 70 percent of adults into the formal financial sector over the next three years.-Read More

Seychelles

Caroline Abel

Governor, Central Bank of Seychelles and AfPI Vice Chair

Central Bank of Seychelles took over as the Chair of AFI’s African Financial Inclusion Policy Initiative (AfPI) from the Bank of Tanzania during AfPI Leaders’ Roundtable in Arusha, Tanzania, on 23 June 2022. Seychelles Governor Caroline Abel is the first woman to Chair an AFI regional initiative. We spoke to Governor Abel in Arusha, as she assumed her new post of AfPI Chair. -Read More

Armenia

Martin Galstyan

Governor, Central Bank of Armenia

Central Bank of Armenia (CBA) is leading Armenia’s digital transformation in financial markets, which is a key priority under its strategy. In his first blog for AFI, Governor Martin Galstyan discusses how this milestone will create opportunities for digital financial services and act as a catalyst for financial inclusion. -Read More

Iraq

Mustafa Ghaleb

Governor, Central Bank of Iraq

In this blog post, Governor Mustafa Ghaleb outlines some of the bank's recent milestone achievements in financial inclusion and the steps being taken to encourage the greater use of digital financial services and financial technologies.-Read More

Ecuador

Dr. Ruth Arregui Solano

Superintendent, Superintendencia de Bancos

In part two of our interview with Dr. Ruth Arregui, we focus on how financial institutions can play a critical role in promoting climate-friendly financial products and services for future women leaders.-Read More

Ecuador

Dr. Ruth Arregui Solano

Superintendent, Superintendencia de Bancos

In part one of our interview with Dr. Ruth Arregui, the head of Ecuador’s Superintendencia de Bancoy, we look at the challenges facing LAC countries, where the regional initiative is headed in the next two years and how the role of the banking sector in driving financial inclusion.-Read More

Haiti

Jean Baden Dubois

Governor, Banque de la République d'Haïti

Banque de la République d'Haïti (BRH) is the new chair of AFI’s Financial Inclusion Initiative for Latin America and the Caribbean (FILAC). Jean Baden Dubois, governor of the central bank, spoke to AFI about lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic and how they can be used to further financial inclusion across the region.-Read More

Fiji

Ariff Ali

Governor, Reserve Bank of Fiji

The Reserve Bank of Fiji (RBF) conducted its second national financial services Demand Side Survey (DSS) from October to December, 2020. Information gathered from the DSS will be used to monitor the progress and understand both financial inclusion behaviour and the needs of different segments of the population including priority sectors such as MSMEs, agriculture and underserved minority groups including women, youth and people living with disabilities.-Read More

The Philippines

Benjamin E. Diokno

Governor, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas

Recognizing the critical role of the financial industry in developing resilient growth, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas responded to the global COVID-19 pandemic by facilitating environmentally and socially responsible business models through a Sustainable Finance Framework. Governor Benjamin E. Diokno shares important learnings about how this has changed the way the central bank implements policies for future disasters.-Read More

The Philippines

Benjamin E. Diokno

Governor, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas

The Philippines has long been named as one of the world’s most vulnerable countries to climate change risks due to its geographical location. The BSP advocates a progressive and calibrated approach to transition without compromising sustainability objectives. The BSP also calls for stronger global and multi-stakeholder collaboration to address the multidimensional aspects of climate and environmental action and ensure a “just transition.”-Read More

São Tomé and Príncipe

Americo Barros

Governor, Banco Central de Sao Tome e Principe

Climate change has posed a major obstacle in access to finance, especially for low-income earners and vulnerable segments of our population especially those who depend on farms and sea for their livelihoods.-Read More

Malaysia

Datuk Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus

Governor, Bank Negara Malaysia

Financial inclusion is equally, if not more important, for women. With women constituting half of the population, their role in the development of their local communities and national economies is critical.-Read More

Russia

Ksenia Yudaeva

First Deputy Governor, Bank of Russia

Achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment is integral to the SDGs. By ensuring protection of the rights of women and girls across all the goals, we will achieve justice and inclusion, establish economies that will work for all, and sustain our shared environment now and for future generations.-Read More

Samoa

Maiava Atalina Emma Ainuu-Enari

Governor, Central Bank of Samoa

Women are the ideal agents for the financial inclusion policy agenda. When women are financially included, they realize the objectives and intended benefits on their households. Women, especially mothers, will ensure that the needs of her family – e.g., education, health and daily living – are put above her own, or any other priorities, and will manage the household finances to ensure this.-Read More

Honduras

Ethel Deras Enamorado

Presidenta, Comisión Nacional de Bancos y Seguros (CNBS) de Honduras

Our women’s financial inclusion initiatives are key to economic development, as they seek to enhance opportunities for women and contribute to our national plan targets to reduce the gender gap. Our work also contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals, namely goal five on gender equality, specifically, in the financial sector.-Read More

Ecuador

Dr. Ruth Arregui Solano

Superintendent, Superintendencia de Bancos

Since the last century, studies found that the development and well-being of families has a direct relationship with access to credit. More recently, however, studies began to show that access to adequate financial products and services was also paramount. Since then, many new aspects have been added to strengthen the four pillars of financial inclusion: access, usage, quality and welfare.-Read More

Peru

Socorro Heysen Zegarra

Superintendent, Superintendencia de Banca, Seguros y AFP

Financial inclusion for women is a key enabler in reducing poverty and improving well-being. Access to financial services – such as saving accounts, loans and insurance products – means having the opportunity to improve one’s economic status. Increasing women's economic opportunities has a positive impact on human capital, as women tend to prioritize their children’s education and health.-Read More

Costa Rica

Rocio Aguilar

Superintendenta, Superintendencia General de Entidades Financieras (SUGEF)

As financial regulators and policymakers, we strive towards initiatives that promote a market which is comprised of high potential women. Women entrepreneurs in particular, represents a neglected segment in need of accessing financing and new financial instruments.-Read More

Lesotho

Retšelisitsoe A. Matlanyane (PhD)

Governor, Central Bank of Lesotho

For a long time, women have been operating at the margins of the formal economy. The role of women in the mainstream economy has been increasing over time with women’s participation in business. For this reason, financial inclusion is central to our strategy towards reducing poverty and unemployment while we build a stronger and more inclusive private sector.-Read More

Ecuador

Dr. Margarita Hernández

Superintendenta, Superintendencia de la Economía Popular y Solidaria (SEPS)

Financial inclusion is a priority for governments, financial and regulatory authorities, and development agencies worldwide for its ability to eliminate poverty, reduce the income gender gap and, importantly, align national ambitions with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).-Read More

Seychelles

Caroline Abel

Governor, Central Bank of Seychelles and AfPI Vice Chair

Financial inclusion is about ensuring that no one is left behind when it comes to having access to efficient and affordable financial products and services. Therefore, every effort should be invested to continue bridging the gender gap that still exists globally and in all regions.-Read More

Bhutan

Dasho Penjore

Governor, Royal Monetary Authority of Bhutan

“Financial inclusion is a key pillar in achieving Bhutan's national goal of sustainable and inclusive socio-economic growth.“-Read More

Uzbekistan

Mamarizo Nurmuratov

Governor, Central Bank of Uzbekistan

“Similarly to many countries, we consider digital channels as an effective method of increasing the accessibility of banking services.“-Read More

Tanzania

Prof. Florence D.A.M Luoga

Governor, Bank of Tanzania

“Making access to basic accounts a right for citizens would accelerate financial inclusion efforts, and enhance the fundamental foundation for expanding financial services to the unbanked population.”-Read More

Seychelles

Caroline Abel

Governor, Central Bank of Seychelles and AfPI Vice Chair

“There is a need to further explore, how technologies can be used to advance financial inclusion and make it more convenient, affordable and fast for consumers to access financial services.”-Read More

The Bahamas

John Rolle

Governor, Central Bank of The Bahamas

“We would like to see people form relationships with banks digitally, enabling persons in remote communities to open bank accounts and to maintain them remotely.”-Read More

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