President Paul Kagame says Africa has the resources to fund its own economic growth and reduce dependence on external resources.
“Indeed, Africa has the resources to fund its own economic growth and reduce dependence on external resources,” Kagame said.
“To stay competitive, there is a need to keep integrating new technologies into banking to increase financial inclusion and access. Banking can’t just be a service for elites.”
The Head of State made the observation during the 14th virtual Annual Banking and Finance Conference on September 14.
Themed “Economic recovery, inclusion and transformation: The Role of Banking and Finance” the conference will run from 14th to 15th September 2021, targeting to reposition Nigeria’s banking and finance industry as a catalyst for an inclusive and sustainable economic growth and development of the country.
“The Covid-19 has affected every aspect of our economies. But the pandemic also presents opportunities for Africa’s banks to play a leading role in making our societies more resilient, and more responsive to the needs of our people,” Kagame said.
“Whatever affects business, affects banking. Financial services are the engine of private sector development. Banks are crucial for allocating capital wisely and productively.”
Kagame noted that banking cannot just be a service for elites.
“African Continental Free Trade Area is creating new opportunities for pan African trade and investments. Banks with Continental reach, like several institutions presented here, can lead the way in cementing economic integration,” Kagame said.
“Finally, the banking sector, more than any other, understands the importance of integrity and good customer service. Banking is ultimately about trust. We look to you to set the pace in this regard,” Kagame noted.
He added that as the government the role is to maintain good enabling environments, protecting both shareholders and consumers, while allowing for innovation.
The Banking and Finance Conference is an annual event of The Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), with an estimated audience of 1,000 people comprising professionals, policy makers, regulators, operators and other stakeholders in the financial services industry.
They connive annually to share experiences and exchange ideas on contemporary issues affecting the sector and the economy as a whole.