RESERVE Bank of Fiji Governor Sada Reddy believes rural dwellers are financially literate.
Mr Reddy made the comments when replying to questions posed by this newspaper on what efforts were being done to ensure that the unbanked received some financial literacy training prior to their accessing the latest financial service product e-money.
He said the assumption most rural dwellers did not have much financial skills was wrong and in fact some knew more than urban dwellers.
Tilman Bruett of the Pacific Financial Inclusion program was also asked the question particularly as the UNDP recently released a report where it was found that there were low levels of financial literacy in rural areas. There are at least 80 per cent of those studied who did not know how loans worked.
Mr Bruett said mobile phone companies would also offer some financial literacy training.
The e-money project sees mobile phone companies playing a similar role such as banks. For example, people may put some money into their "accounts" which they can either send to relatives or pay bills.
The advantage is that the process of registering is not as cumbersome as the bank where you need to provide a birth certificate, utility bill and perhaps a pay slip to open an account.
With e-money, a letter from the village headman can get you registered for the service.