National Financial Inclusion Strategy

The document “Estrategia Nacional de Inclusión Financiera 2014-2018 (ENIF)” was presented on 2nd December 2014 in Paraguay. The report laid down the guidelines for the government’s nationwide development strategy, a vital part of the drive to achieve full financial inclusion by 2030, established under the National Development Plan.

The strategy in based on an analysis of the current state of financial inclusion in the country, using the results of the 2013 financial-inclusion survey, Encuesta de Inclusión Financiera (EIF). It identifies realistic targets and establishes a coordinated action plan involving the public and private sectors and civil society, in order to reduce poverty and boost economic growth in Paraguay.

The report sets forth four objectives to be met by 2018:

  1.  Reduce the financial vulnerability of households at the foot of the socio-economic pyramid.
  2. Attain more widespread provision and uptake of financial services in a secure, competitive market.
  3. Help economic development and growth by giving MSMEs and larger businesses greater access to financial products.
  4. Promote financial inclusion, striking a balance between the interests of the financial sector and consumer education and protection.

It identifies five groups in the population (people living in extreme poverty; living in less extreme poverty; people with an average income; with a medium-high income and with a high-income) and studies the demographic and financial profile of each, along with their specific financial servicing requirements.

The strategy sets up seven groups to work on different aspects of finance, in order to meet these requirements and comply with the four main objectives of the strategy plan. These are the Savings, Credit, Insurance, Payments, Financial Education, Consumer Protection and Vulnerable Populations Working Groups.

Under Decree 1971/14 the Comité Nacional de Inclusión Financiera was set up to boost financial inclusion, under the umbrella of the ENIF. It comprises representatives of the Paraguay Central Bank (BCP), the Ministry of Finance (MH), the National Cooperativism Institute (INCOOP) and the Technical Planning Secretariat (STP).

The last section of the report includes a list of the forty nine (49) tasks in the action plan. It ranks them by priority, deadline and the group responsible for their roll-out.