International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group announced on Wednesday that leading financial services institutions in Tanzania are committing to improving their gender diversity, including by increasing the number of women in leadership roles, supporting its strategy to strengthen women’s participation and equality in the sector.
IFC’s Finance2Equal Tanzania program launched in April whereby CEOs from seven banks, insurers, and other financial sector institutions concurred to reduce gender gaps across their management and general workforce and to increase women’s access to financial products and services.
Ruth Zaipuna, acting Managing Director for NMB Bank said: “NMB Bank values gender diversity at the workplace particularly in leadership positions, which allows equal and diverse contributions to the organization that are essential for success.”
Frank Ajilore, IFC’s Resident Representative for Tanzania and Burundi, said, “IFC is helping Tanzania’s financial sector implement gender-smart solutions because equal participation of men and women is both the right thing to do and is also vital to economic development, job creation and poverty reduction.”
The CEOs who are committed to implement gender-smart strategies over the next 18 months are Sanjay Rughani (Standard Chartered), Abdulmajid Nsekela (CRDB), Ruth Zaipuna (NMB Bank), Khamis Suleiman (Sanlam Life), Violet Mordechai (AAR Insurance), Theobald Sabi (NBC Bank) and Sabasaba Moshingi (TPB Bank).
Studies show only 12 percent of women in Tanzania own bank accounts or use banking services and that only 35 percent of managerial positions and 13 percent of board positions in the country are held by women.
IFC’s Finance2Equal Tanzania program focuses on bridging gender gap in Tanzania’s financial sector by convening the country’s top financial services providers to promote gender equality in the sector and increase access to financial products and services for women-owned and run businesses.
“IFC has long taken a comprehensive approach to reduce gender inequality. We create partnerships to encourage the hiring of women and improving their working conditions; we help expand access to financial services for women; we invest in innovative technologies that expand choices of female consumers; and we work with partners to provide business skills and leadership training to women entrepreneurs,” he added.