National Financial Inclusion Strategies Current State of Practice

An overview of the practices different countries have adopted and highlight of recent developments

National financial inclusion strategies (NFIS) have gained a great deal of traction in recent years and are becoming an increasingly common policy approach of many member institutions in the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI).

The Maya Declaration of 2011 contributed significantly to this heightened interest in national strategies. Of the 57 institutions that had made commitments under the Maya Declaration by the end of September 2015, 35 have committed to formulating and implementing an NFIS and of these 35 countries, 16 have already formulated one. In addition, a poll taken at the 2012 AFI Global Policy Forum held in Cape Town, South Africa, showed that 97% of respondents thought a national strategy was essential to accelerate financial inclusion. This surge in interest is also due to better available data on the acuteness of the financial exclusion problem and a better understanding of the power of strategic approaches to achieve financial inclusion objectives.

This paper covers NFIS practice in relation to two different, but essentially interlinked phases of the strategy process: formulation and implementation (which also includes progress monitoring and evaluation). The objective of the paper is to provide an overview of the practices different countries have adopted and highlight recent developments. 

About this Publication

By Fernando, N. , Newnham, R.