Sub-Saharan Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa is comprised of 47 countries and a population of 936 million people. Nearly 70% of the population falls below the USD 2 per day poverty line.

In Sub-Saharan Africa mobile technology has the potential to vastly expand financial inclusion. 34% of adults now have a bank account, an increase from 24% in 2011. 12% of adults in the region have a mobile money account compared to just 2% globally.

Banks and other deposit-taking institutions, like cooperatives, dominate financial systems in Sub-Saharan Africa with regulated microfinance institutions increasingly playing an important role in expanding access to financial services to low-income earners.

Nearly 59% of the adult population has saved money in the last year, with 16% of them doing so at a formal financial institution. Conversely, credit is more commonly taken from family or friends (41%) than from a formal financial institution (6%).

48% of adults in Sub-Saharan Africa send or receive domestic remittances. Shifting domestic remittance payments from over-the-counter money transfer operators to accounts could double account ownership in Senegal, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Republic of Congo.

Sources: Global Findex, Population Reference Bureau, World Bank