The United bank for Africa (UBA) showed its commitment to deepening financial inclusion in Nigeria with a N400 million donation.
This was stated in its 2018 full year financial report released on Friday, which showed, of a total of N1.03 billion donations in Nigeria, commitment to financial inclusion and public enlightenment project, accounted for 38.7 percent of total donation value.
As stated in the directors’ report, donations by the group is targeted to, ‘‘commitment to the development of host communities, the environment and broader economy.’
According to figures by the Enhancing Financial Innovation and Access (EFInA), financial sector development organisation as compiled from its results of the 2018 Access to Financial Services (A2F) Survey, Nigeria’s financial exclusion rate reduced from 41.6 percent in 2016 to 36.8 percent.
To this end, with less than two years to meet its 80 percent financial inclusion target, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) approved the setting up of a financial inclusion Trust Fund to help drive its course.
Meanwhile, total donations across the group amounted to N1.048 billion, with N1.03 billion in Nigeria and N15.14 million in the rest of Africa.
Amongst other expenses entries, UBA’s donations year on year increased the most. Total donations increased by 25.8 percent against N833 million donations in 2017 recorded by the tier one lender. However, this accounted for about 1 percent of total expenses for the period.
‘‘if N400 million was truly donated to boosting financial inclusion in Nigeria, then this is a good example other banks can emulate,’’ an analyst who pleaded anonymity told BusinessDay.
Meanwhile, UBA recorded a profit after tax (PAT) of N78.6 billion, a marginal increase by 1.36 percent from previous income recorded in 2017.
Growth in PAT was slowed down by a 9 percent increase in total expenses for the period to N225.89 billion against N206.6 billion in 2017.
UBA declared a final dividend of N0.65 for every ordinary share of 50 kobo each, bringing the total dividend to N0.85 per share for the 2018 financial year ended December 2018.
As at the close of market on Monday, UBA’s stock was up 1.34 percent to N7.55 with a market capitalization of N258.20 billion.