Haiti – Economy : 89% of the adult Haitian population is unbanked
01/05/2024 10:42:05

Haiti - Economy : 89% of the adult Haitian population is unbanked

The current history of Haiti contrasts with its genesis: the first country in Latin America to gain independence after having been the richest colony of France. Today, it is the poorest Nation in the hemisphere and the majority of its population survives between the uncertainty and risk of knowing whether they will survive the next day. The World Bank (WB) estimates the poverty rate at 63%, almost generalized poverty forcing more than five million Haitians to live on less than $3.65 per day. The violence has only increased the vulnerability of the population.

It is this context which makes it difficult to use the banking sector as a mechanism for the economic integration of people. 89% of Haitian adults are unbanked according to the Central Bank of Haiti (BRH).

According to the World Bank, near-generalized poverty forces more than five million Haitians to live on less than $3.65 per day.

According to data from the FinScope household survey, 96% of people do not have access to a financial advisor. Furthermore, according to the analysis, 51% do not know how to save and 50% do not have information on investment possibilities.

The BRH considers these alarming figures which show the weakness of Haitian financial education in the age of technology and considers that it is urgent to strengthen the financial capacities and knowledge of households. To achieve this, four main objectives are targeted: “train and educate in good financial practices, raise awareness to better deal with financial and technological risks; provide information on certain tools that will allow them to effectively manage their financial assets and support the development of financial skills and knowledge to better plan their financial health.”

To encourage savings, despite the fact that 67% of its population lives on less than 4.00 US dollars per day, the Central Bank of Haiti has published an illustrated quarterly review https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-42167-haiti-economy-brh-launches-a-financial-education-magazine.html to promote and highlight the importance of savings and investment, as well as the means to access them with different modalities available .

Download the first issue of the journal: https://www.haitilibre.com/docs/La-Revue-Developpement-de-Connaissances-et-Competences-Financieres-UIF.pdf

According to FinScope data, 70% of adults don’t save, making it difficult. However, the Central Bank of Haiti believes that “the adoption of an approach based on the determinants of behavioral economics, combined with an awareness campaign on financial education, could change certain economic and financial behaviors of households in Haiti.”

HL/ HaitiLibre

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