Proceedings of 2nd International Conference on Business, Management and Economics
Financial inclusion in rwanda: achievements, challenges and prospectives. evidence from umurenge saccos
Uzziel Hategekimana; Prof. Thomas R. Kigabo and Dr. Charles Ruhara
Financial inclusion has become a major concern to policy makers at both national and global levels, in the aspect of achieving sustainable economic development. To achieve desirable level of financial inclusion, Government of Rwanda established a community based financial institution under designation of “UMURENGE SACCO”. The study sought to examine the extent at which UMURENGE SACCOs contributed in achieving accessibility, affordability and uptake of financial services in Rwanda. The study adopted a triangulation of quantitative and qualitative research approach. Data from demand side of financial inclusion was collected using questionnaire and documentary review. Population under study was 55898 members of 10 selected UMURENGE SACCOs throughout the country. A sample of 656 UMURENGE SACCO members was determined using Raosoft sample size calculator. Descriptive and inferential statistics were utilized to present and analyze data. The study results revealed that 75.8% of UMURENGE SACCO walks for less than an hour time to access financial services including opening bank account, deposit and withdrawals, savings, payments and credit. Nevertheless, less than 50% of UMURENGE SACCO members are able to take loans. It is also worth noting that despite of low level of uptake, financial services of UMURENGE SACCO significantly contribute to socio-economic welfare of members. To achieve a wide level of uptake, financial service providers should ensure that services are tailored to customers’ needs. Modern financial technologies should be leveraged on to achieve desirable level of convenience in service delivery.
Keywords: Accessibility; Affordability; Convenience; Financial services; uptake.