"Partnering to turn financial literacy into action"
Another building block to international discussions on financial education
OTTAWA, May 27, 2011 ─ The global financial and economic turmoil has strengthened the argument for providing consumers with financial education to improve financial literacy, agreed participants in Partnering to turn financial literacy into action, a global conference on financial literacy. At the close of the conference, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shared its recommendations and official instruments designed to help governments work toward national strategies for financial education and help stakeholders design and implement more efficient financial literacy programs; and the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) outlined its plans for increasing financial literacy and competence among Canadians.
Held in Toronto on May 26-27 and hosted by FCAC and OECD, the one-and-a-half-day conference covered:
"The remarkable number of delegates who attended this conference shows that financial literacy continues to gain momentum, both in Canada and around the world. The information and best practices shared during this event will improve financial education and strengthen the ties that unite members of the financial literacy's worldwide community. Increasing financial literacy is not a goal we can achieve working in silos. Building partnerships and collaboration among financial literacy advocates is crucial if we want to implement strong and efficient national strategies, and succeed in raising financial literacy levels among our fellow citizens," stated FCAC Commissioner Ursula Menke.
Partnering to turn financial literacy into action brought together close to 400 senior officials and experts from the private, public and voluntary sectors, as well as members of the academic community.
"We are very pleased with the response of both Canadian and international participants to this conference," declared André Laboul, head of the OECD Financial Affairs Division and chair of the INFE. "This event took place against a background in which financial education and financial consumer protection have gained even more recognition from governments and global organisations like the G20. This calls for further and closer collaboration among public institutions and stakeholders active in the field of financial education and the OECD is fully committed to continuing to play a leading role in this field in particular through the International Network for Financial Education (INFE)."
A report summarizing the conference's discussions will be published in the fall of 2011.
To find out more, view the #FinLitConf hashtag on Twitter, which was used by FCAC (@FCACan) and other Twitter users to gather tweets referring to the conference.
The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC)
The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) was established in 2001 by the Canadian government to strengthen oversight of consumer issues and expand consumer education in the financial sector. With educational materials and interactive tools, FCAC provides objective information about financial products and services to help Canadians increase their financial knowledge and confidence in managing their personal finances. FCAC informs consumers about their rights and responsibilities when dealing with banks and federally regulated trust, loan and insurance companies. FCAC also makes sure that federally regulated financial institutions, payment card network operators and external complaints bodies comply with legislation and industry commitments intended to protect consumers.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
The OECD is an intergovernmental organization of 81 member countries, whose core mission is to help governments work together towards a stronger, fairer and cleaner global economy. Through its network of about 250 specialized committees and working groups, the OECD provides a setting where governments compare policy experiences, seek answers to common problems, identify good practices, and co-ordinate domestic and international policies. In order to respond to OECD governments' growing concerns over adverse affects of low financial literacy levels, a comprehensive and high-level project on financial education was launched in 2003. In the aftermath of the financial crisis, the OECD has further expanded its project to include emerging economies with the creation in 2008 of the International Network on Financial Education (INFE), which includes 81 countries and more than 160 public institutions
FCAC and the OECD would like to acknowledge the contribution of the Russian/World Bank/OECD Trust Fund as well as the support this Conference received from the following sponsors and collaborators: TD Bank Group, the CAAMP Foundation, the Canadian Bankers Association (CBA), the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA), Citibank, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), DundeeWealth, Genworth Financial, HSBC Bank, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), the Investor Education Fund (IEF), the Office of Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB), the OmbudService for Life & Health Insurance (OHLI), RBC Royal Bank, Scotiabank, Sun Life Financial, The Exchange and Visa.
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Acting Communications Manager