Assessing Digital and Financial Literacy in Timor Leste: A Survey on Knowledge, Skills and Access

  • December 30, 2023

  • Publications, guides and communication materials


The growing availability of digital financial services (DFS) and emerging digital platforms in Timor-Leste can provide unique capital-building tools and resources for accelerating financial inclusion and inclusive growth for the last mile. To realize this potential, strengthening digital and financial literacy (DFL) of all population segments, especially the marginalized and low-income groups is essential.

Improved financial and digital literacy can contribute to strengthen consumer protection and resilience to major financial shocks. The Government of Timor-Leste recognizes the urgency of equipping the citizens with relevant digital and financial management and decision-making skills so they can harness DFS to the benefit of their financial health and well-being, this was reflected in the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (2017-2022).

In this context, it is essential to assess the status of financial and digital literacy in Timor-Leste to design and implement evidence backed interventions. However, efforts to improve digital and financial literacy through targeted interventions have been significantly challenged by a lack of baseline DFL data in the country on which to base these efforts and track the progress.

To address this gap, UNCDF conducted the Digital and Financial Literacy Survey in Papua New Guinea and six other Pacific Island countries (Samoa, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu, Tonga and Papua New Guinea) to assess the current state of digital and financial literacy within each country. The research explores experiences with traditional and digital financial services to-date, in addition to assessing basic competencies in the areas of digitization and finance.

The survey findings will be used to develop and implement targeted interventions for improving digital financial competencies among women, MSMEs, youth, migrant workers, and rural communities. The survey results are intended to serve as a baseline from which future changes in competencies, access, and usage can be measured by the regulators and development partners.

Discover DFLS findings from other Pacific Island Countries:

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