Tanzania gets women’s bank

At last women in the country have something to smile about following the inauguration of a bank that will cater for their interests.

The Tanzania Women’s Bank (TWB) that has been on the drawing board for nearly a decade opened its doors for business through its first branch in Dar es Salaam.

The bank’s senior officials said it will also cater for marginalized groups in the country as well as men.

Speaking during its soft opening, the TWB managing director, Ms Margareth Mataba, said its long term plan is to reach all 26 regions of Tanzania and all districts.

The pace of rolling out, she noted, will depend on customers  response to its operations.

“The opening is to introduce the public to the bank’s activities and services. The official launch of the bank would be held at a later date,” she said, and continued:

“The difference between us and other banks is that we are specifically designed to cater for women’s banking needs stemming from the fact that in the past most women were ignored in other conventional finance institutions.”

The bank has begun operations with a capital of Sh2.9 billion of which Sh2.1 billion came from government coffers.

The remaining amount was contributed by the Ministry for Community Development, Gender and Children under which it falls.
Ms Mataba said customers would not require letters of introduction to open accounts, but only a voter s card or passport. The minimum for opening an account is Sh3000, she explained.

The bank has also joined the UmojaSwitch system that enables customers to access their accounts through any of the system’s automated teller machines (ATMs).

It will soon introduce mobile banking to enable it reach the rural areas faster.

The bank has devised a system that will enable clients, especially those in employment and groups, to acquire loans through a guarantor facility if they lack collaterals, she said.

Source: The Citizen

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