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Equity Bank CEO Named UN Advisor

Equity Bank CEO James Mwangi has been appointed a UN advisor on Inclusive Financial Sectors under the recently formed UN Advisors Group. 

The UN Advisors Group is being co-hosted by the United Nations Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (|UNCDF). 

The UN Advisors Group on Inclusive Financial Sectors will provide advice and guidance to the UN, UNDP, UNDESA and UNCDF on the development of inclusive financing systems, especially for the unbanked people in the developing world. 

The group has the mandate to think broadly and creatively about the best way to realizing inclusive financial sectors in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs). 

Only two other Africans Damon Justin Baro, the Governor Central Bank of West African States and Donald Kaberuka, the President of the African Development Bank (ADB) are in the group. The team, which has some of the most renowned names in the world of finance, includes Lynn Foster, the President of Deustche Bank, Rijkman Groenik, Chairman ABN AMRO Bank, Diana Taylor, the US Supritendant of Banks, Stanley Fischer, the Governor of Central Bank of Israel, Suzzane Nora, Vice Chair, Goldman Sachs, Joseph Trovosky, former Prime Minister, Czech Republic, Francois Bourguignon, the Chief Economist, World Bank and Raghu Rajan, Chief Economist IMF. 

The UN Advisors Group, is the brainchild of last year’s UN Advisors for International Year of Microcredit, which recommended that the UN appoint a group of experts for a two-year period to encourage, support and monitor global progress toward establishment of inclusive financial systems. 

So far, a trust fund worth USD 1.5 million (Sh 120 million) has been set up to run the groups secretariat. 

Mwangi's appointment to the committee is the product of Equity Bank’s achievements in making banking services available to thousands of low income Kenyans. 

Of particular interest to the UN has been Equity’s use of mobile Banks to enable low income rural communities’ access financial services to better their livelihoods. 

The bank runs 52 mobile banking units with a total deposit base of Sh250 million to compliment its branch network of 36 branches. The bank controls a deposit base of nearly 12 billion with over 700,000 customers. 

Mwangi broke into the global finance platform last year, when he was included in the list of business leaders from Africa who addressed the G8 Business Action for Africa Summit in Gleneagles, UK. 


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