UNSGSA Queen Máxima to Visit Tanzania to Promote Financial Inclusion

UNSGSA Queen Máxima and Tanzania President Samia
UNSGSA Queen Máxima and Tanzania President Samia Suluhu Hassan are pictured during a meeting to discuss opportunities to boost inclusive finance in the country on 19 October 2022 in Dar es Salaam. Photo credit: Patrick van Katwijk

Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands will conduct a country visit to Tanzania in her capacity as the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA) on 18-19 October 2022.

In close collaboration with key leaders and stakeholders, the UNSGSA will promote and support a range of financial inclusion priorities. There will be an emphasis on the country’s national financial inclusion framework and enabling an inclusive digital economy. Focus will be on support for innovative fintech and investment in key digital public goods, such as interoperable payments, data privacy, and digital IDs — which are critical to reach underserved groups like the poor, women, smallholder farmers and small businesses.

According to the latest World Bank’s Global Findex (2021), in Tanzania, 52% of adults (aged 15+) have access to an account, representing an increase from 47% in 2017 and 17% since 2011. Much of this growth was driven by an increase in mobile money account ownership, which rose from 32% in 2014 to 45% in 2021. Meanwhile, there is a gender gap of 13 percentage points, with 59% of men able to access an account compared to 46% of women.

On the first day of the visit, the Special Advocate will meet with local customers who use and benefit from financial services and products, as well as discuss what might be needed to better meet their needs and help them build their resilience and financial health. This includes an anticipated pair of visits around Kilimanjaro in the morning, and a third visit in Dar es Salaam in the afternoon.

On the second day, the UNSGSA is expected to meet with President Samia Suluhu Hassan, Bank of Tanzania (BOT) Governor Florens Luoga, Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning Hamad Hassan Chande, and Deputy Minister of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Eng Kundo Mathew, among other government representatives and leaders in the private sector. She will also hold a brief meeting during the Generation Equality Forum (GEF) with a small group of the GEF council to learn more about their work and goals related to inclusive finance.

Further, the Special Advocate will attend a roundtable meeting on inclusive fintech with representatives from the private sector to hear their thoughts on how innovation can support greater digital financial and economic inclusion.

The UNSGSA will be supported by a select group of partners from her Reference Group—including from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), and the World Bank Group.

This will be the UNSGSA’s third visit to Tanzania, including in April 2010 and December 2013.

Promoting financial inclusion in Africa is a priority focus area for the UNSGSA. In June 2022, the Special Advocate conducted visits to Côte d'Ivoire and Senegal. The UNSGSA has engaged with numerous countries across the African continent to promote inclusive finance over the years, including visits to Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Rwanda, and South Africa.