Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

Financial Inclusion in Africa: Is the Informal Sector Still Relevant?

Event Date: 
Oct 02, 2019
9:30 am EDT
Online Event
The SEEP Network


Findex data shows that across Ghana, Tanzania and Zambia formal financial inclusion has increased significantly, from 32% in 2011 to 64% in 20181. During the same period, informal finance has expanded from 8% to 19%, indicating that informal financial services remain enormously relevant to the management of household and business finance, specifically for lower-income customers. It also suggests that most of this growth is driven by customers who use both informal and formal finance.

This webinar will look at the relationship between formal and informal financial services usage more closely, based on a four-country analysis of Findex data and recent qualitative research conducted by the Savings at the Frontier (SatF) Program. It will also discuss implications for financial service providers and other stakeholders, and focus on the following questions:

  • How and why do customers mix formal and informal finance?
  • What are the links between formal and informal financial services?
  • What can explain the continued use of informal savings mechanisms?
  • Do informal finance users eventually graduate into formal finance?
  • And what does this all mean for financial service providers and other stakeholders interested in working with informal savers?

Using testimonial evidence from Ghana and Zambia, combined with Findex data analysis, speakers will explore these questions and discuss how to support the offering of savings and other financial services given that almost 40% of the population are still not using any formal or informal finance.

Diana Dezso, Itad

Sukhwinder Arora, Savings at the Frontier
Hanna Laufer, Savings at the Frontier 


Posts Related to this Event