Finance

Fintech can lift millions out of poverty, experts declare

Fintech can lift millions out of poverty, experts declare

Some experts have said that leveraging financial technology to promote financial inclusion could lift millions of Nigerians out of poverty.

This was asserted at the maiden Nigeria Fintech & Financial Inclusion Roundtable 2024, organised by Business Journal Media Group in Lagos.

Speaking on the theme, the ‘Role of Fintech & Financial Inclusion in Citizen Empowerment and Economic Growth’ experts stated that proper leverage of fintech would enhance the country’s economy and take Nigerians out of poverty.

Delivering the keynote speech at the event, Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Director, Unified Payment Services Limited, Dr Agada Apochi, said that given the large number of Nigerians using mobile phones, liberating Nigeria out of poverty by leveraging fintech was achievable.

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“There are many more Nigerians having telephones than those having bank accounts. How can we leverage the power of financial technology to deliver financial services for them so that they can be included and grow out of poverty?

“Economic growth and financial inclusion are closely related. You cannot be financially included if you are not economically included. I know we cannot only achieve economic growth, but we will not lift millions of Nigerians who are in poverty; we are going to include them,” he assured.

In her contributions, the Managing Director/CEO, HumanManager Limited, Mrs Adekunbi Ademiluyi, opined that financial inclusion starts with identity, adding that when the identity of an individual is known, one can open an account with the person.

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She said, “We have started well in Nigeria. We can’t compare ourselves with other countries, but we are getting there. Some companies are doing a lot. The fintechs are going to places you and I could not reach before.

“Even the banks before were trying to compete with fintechs, but they have understood that there is no need to compete with fintech, rather, they should sign an agreement and ensure that fintechs go out to do their job of going out to gather individuals and ensure they continue to open accounts.”

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In his opening remarks as chairman of the occasion, the Group Chairman of Nigerian Exchange Group, Dr Umaru Kwairanga, assured that by leveraging cutting-edge technologies like mobile platforms, big data analytics and distributed ledger systems, fintech has the power to democratise finance, breaking down barriers and extending access to financial services to the underserved and unbanked.

He stated that NGX Group was strategically focused on leveraging fintech success in the capital market.

He added that it recognised the potential of fintech in boosting retail investor participation, which was aimed at ensuring that the average Nigerian benefits from the myriad of opportunities available for wealth creation in the capital market.

Punch

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