UNSGSA Queen Máxima Presents Secretary-General Guterres with 2023 Annual Report at United Nations

UNSGSA Queen Máxima and the Secretary-General António Guterres
Queen Máxima shared her new UNSGSA Annual Report with UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the UN in New York on 29 August 2023. She also presented him with the "Igniting SDG Progress Through Digital Financial Inclusion" publication. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

H.M. Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA), shared her new Annual Report with UN Secretary-General António Guterres during a bilateral meeting at UN headquarters today in New York.

Written under the theme "Creating a Path Toward Resilience and Opportunity," the UNSGSA’s 2023 Annual Report showcases her strategic work over the past 12 months. It focuses on three key technical priorities, including financial health, inclusive green finance, and responsible financial inclusion in the digital economy.

The report details important strides made via a range of key activities and initiatives, such as country visits to Brazil, Morocco, and Tanzania, along with an array of impactful meetings, engagements, media appearances, and speeches.

In a concerted effort to champion access and usage of safe, affordable, and effective financial services, the UNSGSA's recent activities hold particular significance. Notably, these endeavors seek to address the financial needs and financial health of traditionally underserved groups, including the poor, women, smallholder farmers, and micro-, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).

As the UNSGSA detailed in the report, financial inclusion, particularly digital, remains a vital component of the global effort to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)—now at the midway point of the UN 2030 Agenda. Queen Máxima also highlighted that the pervasive effects of COVID-19 have left an indelible mark on poverty and livelihoods. Alongside this, global conflicts, climate change, and inflation have ushered in an era of food insecurity and soaring costs of living, particularly affecting those in emerging economies.

“In these challenging times, financial services, including payments, savings, credit, insurance, and investment products, have helped people better respond to economic and climate shocks, and remain a necessary building block for financially healthy and productive futures,” wrote Queen Máxima in her UNSGSA Message.

To download the full report, please click here.