Many Nigerians, for numerous reasons are unbanked and lack access to formal financial services. The results of the EFInA Access to Financial Services in Nigeria 2012 survey showed that 34.9 million adults representing 39.7% of the adult population were financially excluded. Only 28.6 million adults were banked, representing 32.5% of the adult population.
Billions of Naira circulate through the informal sector and this has a negative impact on the country’s economic growth and development. The EFInA Access to Financial Services in Nigeria 2012 survey revealed that 23.0 million adults save at home. If 50.0% of these people were to save N1,000 per month with a bank, then up to N138 billion could be incorporated into the formal financial sector every year.
The impact of financial exclusion
High levels of financial exclusion pose two major threats to economies:
The opportunity for the private sector
Providing financial products and services to the low income population represents a large business opportunity for the private sector. Providers of financial products and services should develop innovative products and services that better suit the needs of the low income unbanked and under-banked population.