Impact of Microfinancein Promoting Financial Inclusion in Nigeria

Emeka E. Ene, Udom A. Inemesit


Despite the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) initiatives to encourage banks to extend their services and facilities to rural areas, a high percentage of the rural dwellers still remain unbanked and as such, the initiatives appear not to promote financial inclusion services among the poor in Nigeria. As a result, small entrepreneurs often lack enabling financial environment to grow. The study undertakes an empirical analysis of the impact of microfinance in promoting financial inclusion in Nigeria between 1990 and 2014 using OLS regression method. Unit root test was conducted on the variables to examine their level of stationary to avoid spurious regression results. The findings showed that minimum deposit amount have a positive and significant relationship with saving. It was observed that access to microfinance minimum deposit amount has significant effect on savings account opened by rural dwellers. Microfinance interest rate was however found to have a negative and insignificant relationship with the rural dwellers loans and advances. Recommendations were made among which are that Government should facilitate microfinance branches close to the rural area, products and services accessible to a large segment of the potentially productive Nigeria population, who are currently not being served by the formal financial sector.

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