Abu Dhabi Declaration on Microfinance and Financial Inclusion

17 Mar 2016
Financial Inclusion
During the Microcredit Summit 2016 held under the patronage of H.H Sheikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council in Abu Dhabi, in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates, from 14 to March 17, 2016, all the delegates recognized the importance of Microfinance and financial Inclusion and their effective role in poverty reduction and empowerment of women. In addition to that, the role Microfinance plays in integration of different segments of society such as retirees, people with special needs, and people with low-income, in order to promote social welfare.

The micro enterprises contribute significantly to a balanced distribution of development growth and availability of goods and services for low-income categories at low prices, as well as contribute effectively to the reduction of unemployment and other economic benefits that enhance the pillars of a sustainable economy.

In order to support the World Bank and UN goals to achieve full financial inclusion by 2020 and to end extreme poverty wherever it exists around the world by 2030, the delegates committed to: Work with governments and regulators to develop national financial inclusion strategies that:
  • Utilizes digital technology to build a national payments system that can reach everyone at low cost
  • Creates space for specialized financial institutions that provide a broad range of financial services that include saving to micro, small and medium businesses owners.
  • Build financial systems that include a package of diverse and integrated services geared for low-income people
  • Develop legislations and incentives to encourage banks and financial institutions to adopt clear policies and strategies to increase the share of micro-projects of the total loan portfolio
  • Expands financial literacy/education so that people can use financial products in a way that improves their lives and helps them build assets

Developing innovative financial options for entrepreneurs through:
  • Extending agricultural value chains to reach small scale farmers, specially in the rural areas.
  • Linking government social payments to financial systems in a way that expands financial inclusion
  • Creating graduation pathways from social payments and basic livelihoods to micro, small and medium sized businesses
  • Increasing the financial access for Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises (MSME’s)
Creating partnerships between sectors and institutions that link increased financial inclusion to greater social inclusion, including:
  • Expanding access to health financing, health insurance, and health education
  • Expanding training and access for women
  • Creating employment opportunities for all those who can work , especially youth
  • Providing financial services for the older people and people with disability.

Accolades 1.The participants praised the Government of the United Arab Emirates for its outstanding efforts in creating a conducive environment for the development of Microfinance services.

2.Delegates also praised Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development for its distinctive and vital role in promoting the culture of entrepreneurship، and for developing various innovative financial products that serve different segments of society. Khalifa Fund makes significant contribution in bridging the funding gap for various types and categories of small and medium enterprises, which supports the government efforts to build a sustainable economy that secure social stability. 3.The delegates praised the tremendous efforts made by the Arab Gulf Program for Development (AGFUND – Saudi Arabia) in supporting human development efforts through programs and special projects implemented in the developing countries, especially banks that contribute in achieving the financial inclusion for the excluded. 4.The delegates also praised the Microcredit campaign (Washington) and its role in supporting the adoption of best practices in the field of microcredit, and encouraging the exchange of knowledge and mutual practices to achieve the developmental goals.

Abu Dhabi, UNITED Arab Emirates 16 March 2016

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