The Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) has announced that it has reached an agreement with the Lift Above Poverty Organisation (LAPO) Microfinance Bank to support the financial inclusion campaign of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The Benin Zonal Manager, NIPOST, Mr. Usman Abubakar, disclosed this at a training programme on agent banking organized by the LAPO MFB for the staff of the agency in Benin, Edo State
Abubakar noted that the agent banking system is expected to increase the financial inclusion drive of the apex bank to 80 percent by 2020 and reduce the burden of infrastructure on financial institutions, Punch reported.
He further noted that the collaboration with the microfinance bank was also in line with the goal of the CBN to reduce the number of Nigerians without access to banking services.
In his words:
“WE HAVE THE SPREAD AND THE NETWORK AND THEY (BANKS ) DO NOT HAVE THEM. NIPOST HAS POST OFFICES ACROSS THE NOOKS AND CRANNIES OF THE COUNTRY. SO, PEOPLE IN THE RURAL AREAS DO NOT HAVE TO COME TO THE TOWN. WE ARE NOW PUTTING THE SERVICES AT THEIR DOORSTEPS ”
Recall that the CBN in collaboration with stakeholders launched the National Financial Inclusion Strategy on 23rd October 2012 which is aimed at further reducing the exclusion rate to 20% by 2020.
Specifically, adult Nigerians with access to payment services is to increase from 21.6% in 2010 to 70% in 2020, while those with access to savings should increase from 24.0% to 60%, and Credit from 2% to 40%, Insurance from 1% to 40% and Pensions from 5% to 40%, within the same period.