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New financial inclusion specialist here

Mr Isaac Holly, far left, PFIP Deputy Programme Manger, CBSI Deputy Governor and members of SICCI at the ‘Business After 5’ event yesterday

THE Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme (PFIP) has appointed Isaac Holly as its country technical specialist.

Mr Holly, from Uganda, was formally introduced to the larger private sector during a “Business After 5” event hosted by the Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI) and PFIP at the Heritage Park Hotel in Honiara.

PFIP Deputy Programme Manager, Krishnan Narasimhan, who is based in Suva, Fiji, said Mr Holly has a wide experience in financial service across the world.

Mr Holly has worked with PFIP’s sister programme called Mobile Money for the Poor, and has significant experience in digital financial services.

He has also worked with big mobile money providers.

Mr Holly replaces Mr Narasimhan who previously held the position.

Deputy Governor of CBSI, Gane Simbe said PFIP and Central Bank are passionate about introducing to everybody the use of electronic payment system and they want to develop this further.

He has welcomed Mr Holly’s appointment.

Mr Narasimhan yesterday gave brief insights on the importance of financial inclusion.

“Financial inclusion means that all households and businesses have access to appropriate and affordable financial services they need to improve their lives.”

He said PFIP’s main mandate is to help low income households and small businesses gain access to financial services and financial education.

“Financial Inclusion is important, being included in the formal financial system helps people to make day to day transactions, safe guard savings, manage cash flow and smooth consumption and build working capital.

“Finance small businesses or microenterprises, plan for recurring expenses – such as school fees, mitigate shocks such as medical emergencies, or natural disasters and provide for old age financial security and overall welfare.”

Mr Narasimhan said financial inclusion has a big impact on women to manage cash flow and consumption, especially to those in the informal sector, who don’t have regular income.

Only seasonal income or periodical income so if they save away – it helps them on smooth consumption.

It builds a working capital, it is very difficult to those in the informal sector to access credit in a significant manner.

“The only way they can start small businesses and keep running small businesses is to build saving and start saving to run their businesses.”

PFIP is a regional programme under the United Nations jointly managed by UNDP and UN Capital Development Fund

It is funded by UNCDF, AusAid, EU, New Zealand Aid and UNDP.

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