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PRIVATE SECTOR DEVELOPMENT Financial inclusion campaign kicks off

Increasing MSME access to financial services, supports the President’s Recovery Priorities’ focus on private sector development. A financial literacy campaign rolled out by the Bank of Sierra Leone will give MSME’s more financial understanding and confidence.

As part of a campaign to help people manage their money in the modern financial world, the Bank of Sierra Leone is in discussion with government ministries, regulators, market women, petty traders, small and medium enterprises, financial institutions and insurance companies, on a National Strategy on Financial Inclusion in Sierra Leone.

The concept of the National Strategy on Financial Inclusion emerged as a key theme during a week-long financial literacy campaign organised by the Bank of Sierra Leone and UNDP in December last year. This included talks in public places, media activity and visits to schools, colleges and universities. It was aimed primarily at individuals who do not have access to financial services and will provide information on consumer’s rights and responsibilities. It will also help them understand and manage financial risks like borrowing and joining cooperatives.

According to Cyrus Sheriff, the President’s Delivery Team representative in the Ministry of Trade and Industry: “Boosting the private sector is a key objective under the President’s Recovery Priorities and increasing access to finance is one of the strategies that we are using to achieve this. Limited financial literacy serves as a barrier to demand for financial services especially credit, which entrepreneurs need in order to be able to develop and grow their businesses.”

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