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Financial inclusion in Africa : an overview (English)

This paper summarizes financial inclusion across Africa. First, it provides a brief overview of the African financial sector landscape. Second, it uses the Global Financial Inclusion Indicators (Global Findex) database to characterize adults in Africa that use formal and informal financial services and identify the barriers to formal account ownership. Next, it uses World Bank Enterprise Survey data to examine how the use of financial services by small and medium enterprises in Africa compares with small and medium enterprises in other developing regions in terms of account ownership and availability of lines of credit. The authors find that less than a quarter of adults in Africa have an account with a formal financial institution and that many adults in Africa use informal methods to save and borrow. Similarly, the majority of small and medium enterprises in Africa are unbanked and access to finance is a major obstacle. Compared with other developing economies, high-growth small and medium enterprises in Africa are less likely to use formal financing, which suggests formal financial systems are not serving the needs of enterprises with growth opportunities.


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    Demirguc-Kunt, Asli Klapper, Leora

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    Policy Research Working Paper

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    The World Region,

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    Financial inclusion in Africa : an overview

  • Keywords

    Finance & Private Sector Development;Consultative Group to Assist the Poor;small and medium enterprise;small and medium size enterprise;access to financial service;formal financial institution;access to finance;automated teller machine;Rotating Savings and Credit;formal financial system;financial inclusion;mobile money;commercial bank branch;account holder;formal financial sector;family and friends;source of financing;journal of finance;finance and growth;share of equity;lower entry barrier;source of funding;financial sector reform;high income economy;lines of credit;security and reliability;persistent income inequality;risk management product;account ownership;firm size;financial depth;bank finance;financing obstacle;outstanding loan;rural area;school fee;survey data;income quintile;formal financing;internal fund;simple average;point estimate;stock market;geographical location;



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Demirguc-Kunt, Asli Klapper, Leora

Financial inclusion in Africa : an overview (English). Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 6088 Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group.