UN: Financial innovations vital to transform Africa’s business sector

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA – MARCH 07: Headquarters of the united nations economic commission for africa, addis abeba region, addis ababa, Ethiopia on March 7, 2016 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. (Photo by Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images)

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) on Tuesday emphasized the vital need to promote technological innovations in the financial sector to transform Africa’s economic landscape.

The ECA, amid its call to spur financial innovations, also on Tuesday disclosed that its latest continental flagship economic report, dubbed Economic Report on Africa (ERA-2020), will evaluate the role of financial innovations and technologies in transforming Africa’s business sector.

The ECA, which is set to launch the report in March this year, said that this year’s edition of the continental economic report will mainly focus on the status of financial innovations in Africa, as well as the role of financial technologies in transforming Africa’s business sector.

The ECA also stressed the need to articulate the proper utilization of innovative sources of finance to the development of Africa’s business sector, taking into account both potential innovations in the financial services sector and innovations in businesses that include start-ups, micro-enterprises, large corporate, and private-public enterprises.

“These are integral components of achieving sustainable economic development,” an ECA statement issued on Tuesday read.

According to the ECA, the report looks at current knowledge on innovations in finance, including financial technologies (fintech) and how such innovations can make a clear breakthrough in financing business sector development in Africa.”