Home Business & TechEconomy Rwanda Completes First Phase of Umurenge Saccos Digitization Today

Rwanda Completes First Phase of Umurenge Saccos Digitization Today

by Daniel Sabiiti
1:21 pm

Kagano Sacco in Kagano sector Nyamaseke district will witness the automation of the last Umurenge sectors savings and credit schemes (Umurenge Saccos) in Rwanda.

Ministry of Finance and district officials expected to attend the event that will see all 416 sector based Saccos able to provide digital services to citizens in rural Rwanda and further the country’s bid towards financial inclusion.

Savings and credit schemes provide financial services for every day Rwandans to access soft loans and make savings from their incomes which are mainly agro and livestock based.

From today, Umurenge Sacco members will be able to get digital services, unlike today where everything had to be written in a booklet. Even a bank slip will be provided.

In the second phase, the Saccos will be consolidated to an extent that one would be able to deposit money in Nyamasheke and withdraw it from, say, Nyagatare.

Findings of the 2008 Finscope study revealed that 52% of the adult population faced financial exclusion.

To address this issue and promote economic development, the National Dialogue Meeting in December 2008 recommended the establishment of at least one SACCO in each Administrative Sector (UMURENGE).

Despite the formation of 416 USACCOs starting in 2009, these institutions faced operational challenges, including manual business operations, limited scope of business, and a lack of digital financial services for members.

To tackle these challenges, the UMURENGE SACCOs automation and consolidation Project under MINECOFIN’s leadership aims to professionalize these financial institutions through a three-step process: automation of U-SACCOs, consolidation into D-SACCOs, and the establishment of a Cooperative Bank to serve U-SACCOs and their members.

The full automation of all Saccos is expected to boost digital financial services, which as of 2023 stood at 58% and are expected to reach about 80% by the end of this year.

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