Kenya continues to make steady progress in developing financial inclusion. Although we will not be able to quantify accurately the scale of this progress until the next round of the FinAccess survey on financial inclusion in 2012, data from leading institutions is very positive. This report provides our commentary on the market developments we have seen and sets out the activities in which we have been engaged over the year. Our primary aim in publishing this report is to ensure that FSD remains accountable for what we do. We understand accountability to be very much a two-way process. Feedback on what we present in this report or on our work more broadly, positive and negative, is essential to ensuring that we remain responsive to you, our stakeholders. We also hope it offers a useful perspective on financial market development in Kenya.
All FSD’s work is essentially aimed at trying to make financial markets work better for the poor. We eschew the short-run fix in favour of long-term solutions, which can be provided through sustainable market development. The last five years have shown the effectiveness of financial markets in finding solutions to financial exclusion. We have worked hard on our goal of “generating sustainable improvements in livelihoods of poor people through reduced vulnerability to shocks, increased incomes, and employment.”
In the first section of this report we provide a brief overview of how we try to harness markets to benefit the lower income population. The second section summarizes the highlights of our achievements during the year. The third section offers our perspectives on recent developments in Kenya’s financial markets and the impact on financial inclusion.