Queen Máxima to visit Tanzania for digital financial services

AMSTERDAM-Her Majesty Queen Máxima will be visiting the United Republic of Tanzania from today Monday evening 17 October to Wednesday 19 October in her role as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development.

Tanzania is currently drafting its third National Financial Inclusion Framework on access to digital financial services for all Tanzanians.

Máxima is Queen of the Netherlands as the wife of King Willem-Alexander. Argentine by birth, she worked in marketing when she met Willem-Alexander, eldest son and heir apparent of Queen Beatrix, in 1999. They married in 2002, and became king and queen on the abdication of her mother-in-law on 30 April 2013. (Photo by Getty Images).

According to the World Bank Group’s Global Findex database, 52% of adults in Tanzania now have a bank account, compared to 17% in 2011.

The increase is due in part to more people having a digital bank account. However, there is still a 13% gap between men with a bank account and women, to the disadvantage of women. During her visit, the Queen will speak with representatives of the government and of international development organisations, financial institutions-including fintech-and non-profit organisations on what else needs to be done to increase access to financial services for disadvantaged groups.

The focus will be on people on low incomes, women and small business owners (including farmers). In an inclusive digital economy everyone should be able to participate.

Queen Máxima will start her visit on Tuesday with two field visits in the Kilimanjaro region. She will first meet with local farmers and representatives of ACRE Africa to talk about the organisation’s insurance products.

ACRE uses weather data provided by satellites and automated weather stations to assess the situation on a farm and the probability of crop damage. Farmers, often smallholders without employees, can choose how much insurance cover they want against crop damage due to floods or drought, depending on their budget and needs.

The second field visit will concern the MomCare project implemented by PharmAccess. This is a digital healthcare package with fixed costs and quality standards for maternal healthcare.

Pregnant women participating in the project get a digital insurance card entitling them to care at selected hospitals during the various stages of their pregnancy. The data gathered during the project will help improve and streamline mother and child care.

After these excursions, Queen Máxima will travel to Dar Es Salaam, where she will meet with vendors at a local market and agents for mobile banking services and learn about their experiences with digital financial services.

On Wednesday 19 October Queen Máxima will meet with President Samia Suluhu Hassan and with Professor Florens Luoga, Governor of the Bank of Tanzania, Janet Mbene, Deputy Minister of Finance, and Kundo A. Mathew, Deputy Minister of Information, Communication and Information Technology.

Topics will include digital public goods, such as identity documents, digital payments and data privacy. These contribute to optimum use of financial services, financial inclusion and resilience, inclusive fintech and the new National Financial Inclusion Strategy.

The Queen will also speak with members of the Generation Equality Forum, a five-year action journey launched in 2021 under UN Women’s leadership to speed up progress towards gender equality worldwide.

The forum was co-hosted by Mexico and France. In Tanzania the meeting will centre on ways of bridging the gap between men and women when it comes to access to financial services in that country. Queen Máxima will also speak with representatives of fintech companies about innovations to increase digital financial and economic inclusion. (Government Information Service, no. 274)

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