KINGSTON, Jamaica (Thursday, October 28, 2021) — More Jamaicans are being encouraged to become a part of the formal banking system, by reaping the rewards available through digital banking.
The call came from the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service at the second staging of their virtual Wealth Summit on Wednesday, October 20, with a focus on Digital Financial Inclusion.
Delivering opening remarks at the event, Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Marsha Smith, emphasised that the summit is important to the thrust of the Ministry to improve the financial literacy of all Jamaicans.
“The change, brought about by COVID-19, has forced Jamaicans to go digital, to keep the economy going. Jamaicans now have to access many services online, instead of in person. While many of us have transitioned, successfully, to doing business online, a lot of us are still struggling with the digital world,” she said.
Smith pointed out that the summits are created to help Jamaicans find financial stability and a road to recovery, due to the challenges experienced by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The World Bank describes digital inclusion as the deployment of cost-saving digital means to reach financially-excluded and underserved populations, with a range of formal financial services, suited to their needs, that are responsibly-delivered at a cost affordable to customers and sustainable to providers,” she said.
She added that the summit is aimed at clearing up the confusion that exists with how Jamaicans can participate in the digital economy.
“There is no need to stay away from the digital economy. What we simply need are the tools and the information, as to how to adapt to this economy to suit our own purposes. After all, it is the government of Jamaica’s thrust to ensure that much of its own services become digital, and so, as one of the largest providers of services in the country, you will eventually need to become a digital participant in the economy, in order to access government services,” the State Minister said.
The Wealth Summit is part of a free, quarterly series put on by the Ministry, geared at improving the financial literacy of Jamaicans. The event was live-streamed on the Finance Ministry and the Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Facebook and YouTube pages.
Presentations were made by various members of the public and private sectors.