New initiative will be launched to promote basic financial knowledge for consumers and SMEs
February 20, 2018
With the aim of increasing financial awareness among the country’s businesses and consumers, the UAE Banks Federation (UBF), the professional body representing 49 banks in the UAE, has identified financial literacy among its key priorities for 2018. As an industry-focused organization that champions a safe and thriving banking and financial services ecosystem, UBF will launch new initiative to promote financial awareness for both consumers and SMEs.
Financial literacy is becoming more crucial as it helps consumers and SMEs plan and manage their finances responsibly, spend and borrow wisely, and invest prudently in order to avoid financial trouble and distress. Financial knowledge, planning, and management are 3 key pillars required to manage financial resources effectively and devise efficient saving and investment plans and prudent debt management strategies. The need for developing financial literacy programs is to ensure people can make sound financial decisions, select financial products, which best fit their needs, and know how to bank using related channels and new technologies. The initiative is in line with UBF conviction that financial literacy is a critical life skill and the need to put the right knowledge streams and tools to create and enhance a culture of life long financial education.
“Understanding how money works and what services and products banks and financial institutions offer is key to financial education, which is a major building block of an ideal society. A strong grasp of financial principles is critical for businesses, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to make better financial decisions and define their short and long-term business goals, whereas for consumers, financial discipline is a must to enable them to sustain well-being and secure a brighter future. Further, financial literacy has become even more important to mitigate fraud and other challenges as financial crime landscape continues to evolve alongside technological advancements. With increased access to financial services, there is an immediate need to address the lack of financial literacy in order to secure the future of our generations, and UBF has decided to take the lead in promoting financial education,” said H.E AbdulAziz Al Ghurair, Chairman of UAE Banks Federation.
The federation’s member banks have been at the forefront of promoting financial literacy and have launched many initiatives aimed at equipping customers with knowledge and tools to help them use their financial resources efficiently and avoid risks of financial crimes. Furthermore, banks have been exerting efforts to simplify their products and services so that customers can make full use of them.
Financial literacy also tops the agenda of UBF’s Marketing Committee this year. The federation has already launched campaigns on its website and social activities to increase financial awareness among both youth and adults. In addition, UBF continues to encourage member banks to educate their clients through financial literacy programs.
Last year, the federation hosted a ‘Financial Literacy Competition’ for university students in the UAE with the aim of improving young people’s awareness and knowledge of the importance of saving, budgeting, debt management, wise spending and financial planning.