Jordan’s Vision for Financial Inclusion

The Government of Jordan recognizes financial inclusion as an important pillar in inclusive growth and sustainable development. It embarked on the national financial inclusion policy process to build an enabling legal and regulatory framework and infrastructure to achieve a more inclusive financial system.

The Governor of the Central Bank of Jordan (CBJ) stated at the launching event for the Financial Inclusion Vision for Jordan in September 2016 that “it is a right for everyone to have access to financial services”. and, The CBJ understands financial inclusion not as an end in itself, but as a means to an end. Access to and usage of financial products and services at the macro level strengthens inclusive growth, stimulates employment, reduces poverty and inequality, and contributes to the stability and integrity of the financial system. At individual and business level, financial inclusion enhances social well-being: payments and money transfer services facilitate day-to-day lives, loans enable to invest in new ventures, accounts allow to save for the future, insurance increases resilience against shocks.

Financial inclusion policies and actions in Jordan are thus geared towards empowering the financially excluded and underserved – the majority of the population, particularly the vulnerable groups of young adults, women, refugees, low-income segments, and micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). Financial inclusion needs to enable the majority of the population and enterprises to move from the informal to the formal economy; to enable them to harness their potential of contributing more actively to local economic and social developments and benefit from them. Success in this regard needs to be measured in terms of impact – the extent to which the financially excluded and underserved segments are able to improve their standard of living.

The CBJ aims to strengthen the link between financial inclusion and sustainable economic and social development in alignment with SDGs. This will balance the four policy objectives of financial inclusion, the stability of the financial system following the Central Bank Law (23/1971), financial integrity following the AML / CFT regime and National Risk Assessments,13 and protection of financial consumers following laws and regulations for treating clients fairly (I-SIP).