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Financing Africa : Through the Crisis and Beyond

  • Thorsten Beck
  • Samuel Munzele Maimbo
  • Issa Faye
  • Thouraya Triki

Financing Africa: through the crisis and beyond is a call to arms for a new approach to Africa's financial sector development. First, policy makers should focus on increasing competition within and outside the banking sector to foster innovation. This implies a more open regulatory mindset, possibly reversing the usual timeline of legislation-regulation-innovation for new players and products. It also implies expanding traditional infrastructure, such as credit registries and payment systems beyond banks. Second, the focus should be on services rather than existing institutions and markets. Expanding provision of payment, savings and other financial services to the unbanked might mean looking beyond existing institutions, products, and delivery channels, such as banks, traditional checking accounts, and brick-and-mortar branches. All financial sector policy is local. To reap the benefits of globalization, regional integration, and technology, policy makers have to recognize the politics of financial deepening and build constituencies for financial sector reform. While the challenges of expanding access, lengthening contracts, and safeguarding the financial system are similar, the ways of addressing them will depend on the circumstances and context of each country. With its cautiously optimistic tone, this book creates an opportunity for Africa's policy makers, private sector, civil society, and development partners to harness the progress of the past as a way to address the challenges of the future and enable the financial sector to play its rightful role in Africa's transformation.

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This book is provided by The World Bank in its series World Bank Publications with number 2355 and published in 2011.
ISBN: 978-0-8213-8797-9
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbpubs:2355
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