UNSGSA - UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development UNSGSA - UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development


As UNSGSA, Queen Máxima shares experiences across countries and connects people and institutions through speeches and published articles in addition to her meetings with national and global leaders. Through her speeches and published work, Queen Máxima has been an active and passionate voice for financial inclusion.


At the Forefront of Sustainable Development: Investing in People
Berlin, Germany Speaking at the 40th anniversary celebration of Oikocredit International, the Special Advocate highlighted the organization's ethical business model, which places customers at the center of their own development. She urged Oiko to keep up its influential work with low-income communities, smallholder farmers, and women--all groups that are often left out of development efforts. Full text


World Has Extraordinary Opportunity to Unleash the Economic Potential of Women
The Special Advocate highlights actions to economically empower women and introduces the W20 Acceleration Platform for Women’s Economic Empowerment during a side event at the G20 Leaders' Summit in Osaka, Japan. Full text


Women’s World Banking Global Dinner Celebration
New York, USA At a celebration in which the UNSGSA was honored for her “for her tireless efforts to champion financial inclusion around the world,” the UNSGSA spoke about why financial services are so critical for the world’s poorest people, especially for women. Financial services such as savings can empower women by providing privacy and safety. Inclusive financial systems can also meet larger development and growth goals for women by: 1) focusing on services to help to meet basic needs such as water, education and health; 2) developing financial solutions that are sustainable and scalable; 3) providing a continuum of access for microenterprise and SMEs; and, 4) providing longer-term capital and training to develop women’s financial capability. Full text
Women in Financial Services network meeting
Zeist, The Netherlands The UNSGSA noted that products to advance financial inclusion should be sustainable and consider the needs of women, who play a crucial role in economic development. She encouraged investors at the meeting to sign the Principles for Investors in Inclusive Finance, which, she said, puts the interests of clients first. Full text


Why Does Financial Inclusion Matter for Women?
Buenos Aires, Argentina Women’s lack of access to financial services not only impedes their ability to fulfill their full potential, but also has broader consequences for the global economy. In her keynote address at a G20 side event on women’s financial inclusion, the UNSGSA highlighted the need to collect gender-disaggregated data on financial services, remove structural barriers to women’s access, ensure universal identification, and close the digital gender divide.  Full text


Where Do We Stand with Financial Literacy
Paris At the launch of the OECD's PISA 2015 financial literacy assessment of students, the Special Advocate addressed the importance of young people's ability to make financial decisions about their lives. It is essential to prepare the next generation for economic citizenship. But PISA results show the danger of an increasing gap between advantaged and disadvanted youth--data that poses a call to action. Full text


Where Do We Go from Here? Moving forward with financial inclusion
London, UK The next move forward for financial inclusion will be driven by innovation and led by the private sector in partnership with other stakeholders, the UNSGSA said at a conference in London. Innovative products such as mobile financial services and branchless banking have already reached millions, and e-commerce firms hold great promise. Countries are developing plans, adopting supportive regulations, and encouraging partnerships. But challenges remain: ensuring that regulators keep up with innovation; protecting and educating consumers; preventing fraud; creating responsible products. By overcoming these hurdles, we can help the poor become stakeholders in a sustainable global economy. Full text


Utilizing Technology and Reaching Underserved Populations
Buenos Aires, Argentina In a message to attendees at a special seminar on financial inclusion organized by Banco de la Nación prior to the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, the UNSGSA urged participants to use innovative approaches to reach women, farmers, the poor, and other financially excluded populations. These include digital technologies, banking agents, and mobile money. She also noted that access to financial services can speed progress on global development goals.  Full text


Statement at the Financial Inclusion Forum: Leaving No One Behind
Short statement from the UNSGSA for the symposium Finclusion.in.UA: “Financial Inclusion Forum — Leaving No One Behind” on 12 June 2019 in Kiev, Ukraine. The statement was read by the ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ukraine, H.E. E. Hoeks. Full text


UNSGSA Speech to the 8th International Microinsurance Conference
Tanzania The UNSGSA highlighted that the growth of the microinsurance industry, beyond an exclusive focus on microcredit, is evidence of how much progress has been made in financial inclusion. She emphasized the importance of microinsurance delivering value and growing carefully, while maintaining client trust, as key to the success of this relatively new field. Successful pilots should be scaled up at the right time to achieve scale. She noted the importance of coordination with other sectors and stakeholders, and the integration of insurance into national financial inclusion strategies.  Full text
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