Queen Maxima Talks of Somali Remittances, Barclays & Westpac

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - APRIL 30: HM Queen Maxima of the Netherlands looks on during the inauguration ceremony at New Church on April 30, 2013 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Photo by Robin Utrecht-Pool/Getty Images)

Financial inclusion was the topic on June 5 when Queen Maxima of the Netherlands held a press conference at the UN, for which she’s the “Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development.” Inner City Press asked Queen Maxima what she has done on the issue of banks like Barclays and Westpac cutting of remittances to Somalia.

Queen Maxima, who had cited remittances in her opening statement, replied among other things that banks take a “risk-based approach,” and that the smaller profits they make on remittances make them cut them off.

It is on just this type of thinking, we’d say, that this UN office ought to be raising its voice, for example in the case of Westpac, which is a member of the UN Global Compact.

 Inner City Press also asked Queen Maxima if UN agencies like UNRWA and UNHCR are working on the issue of the unbanked, trying to ensure that the payments they make help recipients to establish bank accounts. This too is unclear – the answer was that the UN is studying this, is producing knowlege. It will be good to produce results. We will stay on this.

Source: Inner City Press (ICP)


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