Money Matters: Citizens and financial inclusion in Tanzania

One out of five citizens (22%) have an individual or joint bank account, up from 19% in 2014. Access to bank accounts varies significantly between different groups: the richest households 56%, poorest households 6%; urban citizens 41%, rural citizens 13%;  and men 24%, women 20%.

There is little difference between age groups in terms of access to bank accounts. Among those who did not have a bank account (78%), eight out of ten (81%) cite a lack of money as the main reason why they did not have one.

These findings were released by Twaweza in a research brief titled Money Matters: Citizens and financial inclusion. The brief is based on data from Sauti za Wananchi, Africa’s first nationally representative high-frequency mobile phone survey. The findings are based on data collected from 1,800 respondents across Mainland Tanzania (Zanzibar is not covered in these results) between 14 and 26 September 2016.

The share of the adult population using mobile money has expanded from 61% in 2014 to 80% in 2016. This means that the Government target of achieving 50% financial inclusion by 2016 has been exceeded by a large margin. A new target of 80% financial inclusion by 2017 has been set in recognition of the fact that, according to the Bank of Tanzania, 50% of citizens used mobile money services in 2014. It is worth noting that the Sauti za Wananchi sample shows higher figures for users of mobile money services because Sauti za Wananchi distributes mobile phones to the sample.

Users of mobile money services are generally satisfied with the services offered: 8 out of 10 (79%) report this. One out of ten (10%) however are unsatisfied, almost all of these cite cost as the reason for their discontent. When all citizens were asked about the cost of mobile money services generally, 4 out of 10 (38%) thought these were too expensive.







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