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Zambia is a landlocked country situated on a high plateau in south-central Africa. It is surrounded by Angola to the west, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe to the south, Mozambique, Malawi and Tanzania to the east and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the north.
About 60% of the Zambian population, especially in rural areas, live below the poverty line of US $2 per day according to the World Bank Statistics. Recognising this lopsided economic landscape, and in order to promote entrepreneurial economic activities for supporting the improved economic welfare of citizens, the Zambian Government has developed the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) and the National Strategy on Financial Education (NSFE). The NFIS and the NSFE are expected to boost entrepreneurial education which is a catalyst for the development of micro-enterprises and employment creation in Zambia.
In this framework the “National Strategy on Financial Education” (NSFE) is one of the important activities being implemented, as approved by the Government of Zambia in July 2012, spearheaded by the Bank of Zambia (BoZ).
As FSDP came to an end, BoZ established a Financial Sector Development (FSD) Unit that now deals with Financial Inclusion respectively Financial Education and is as well responsible for the follow-up of initiatives started under FSDP. One of these topics is the implementation of the National Strategy on Financial Education.
Against this background, the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) and Savings Banks Foundation for International Cooperation (SBFIC) now German Sparkassenstiftung for International Cooperation (DSIK) agreed on the partnership project “Financial Education for Zambia”. The overall strategic objective of the co-operation was to “provide fundamental knowledge on financial services and thus improve its use”
After the orientation phase of the partnership project was successfully performed and positively evaluated, the two partners, Bank of Zambia and the German Sparkassenstiftung für internationale Zusammenarbeit (DSIK) agreed to continue the project and collaboration by conducting a first main phase.
The first project main phase from 01 November 2014 until 31 October 2017 was similarly successfully concluded with an independent evaluation in July 2017. It confirmed an outstanding performance of this project phase according to international DAC Criteria1.
A follow up Memorandum of Understanding between the Bank of Zambia and the German Sparkassenstiftung for International Cooperation (DSIK) for a second main phase from 01 November 2017 until 31 December 2020 was then signed, this marked the end of the first project.
After the first project partnering with the Bank of Zambia was successfully implemented between 01 November 2014 to 31 December 2020, a new Memorandum of Understanding has since been signed between the two partners to “Strengthen small-scale Entrepreneurship in Southern Africa”. This new regional project will run until July 2023 covering the countries of Malawi, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia as its hub. It shall contribute to alleviating poverty by enabling micro and small entrepreneurs including farmers to participate in economic activities by having (intellectual and physical) access to finance.
With this notable growth, the work of Sparkassenstiftung has been instrumental in increasing Financial Education and Inclusion in the Country.
In 1778: First Savings Bank founded in Hamburg by merchants to develop solutions
for people with low income to save small sums of money and
to support business start-ups
in 1801: the first savings bank with a municipal guarantor was founded in Göttingen to fight poverty
Each savings bank is independent, locally managed and concentrates its business activities on customers in the region in which it is situated.
In general, savings banks are not profit oriented.
Sparkassen work as commercial banks in a decentralized structure.
Shareholders are usually single cities or numerous cities in an administrative district or guarantors are charitable foundations.