Breaking the chains of poverty in Africa is a challenging task that requires a multifaceted approach, which Ilia Zavialov is helping with through increased and improved financial education. With the significant increase in technology and internet access available on the continent, the world is opening up to many Africans, but often at a cost.
New opportunities arise, but at what cost, such as predatory lending, poor understanding of the nature of contracts, and similar situations? With Africa Feeds noting that many countries in Africa are among the world’s least financially literate, improving financial education on the continent provides a way for Africans to continue improving their quality of life, general education, and financial stability.
As a financial service professional with over a decade of experience in the financial services and banking industries, Ilia Zavialov has had multiple roles in leadership at various major financial institutions. For this reason, he believes in bringing his wealth of knowledge to any organization or project he’s involved in. But beyond facts, figures, spreadsheets, and financial reports is a man passionate about helping people obtain long-term financial security. He sees financial education in Africa as a way to spread this passion into the real world by providing sound advice and careful planning to those most in need of it.
Ilia Zavialov’s expertise is focused on portfolio management, strategic planning, risk management, capital markets, risk management, regulatory compliance, and international finance. As he’s worked with businesses, families, and individuals to understand and identify their specific needs, he helps them develop a comprehensive strategy to achieve their financial goals. With his interest in international finance, he combines his belief in giving back to the community by creating financial literacy courses that could benefit developing countries.
The History of Finance in Developing Countries
In the past, as many countries have developed, it has been relatively common for those who understand finance to take advantage of those who do not. Loans were offered to Indian farmers to buy what was reputed to be improved cotton seed, but which saw failure after failure in the field, driving many farmers to suicide.
Because these farmers did not understand the risk they were undertaking then, they lost everything. Similarly, farm tractors were sent to developing countries to help improve agricultural production, but without the needed infrastructure for fuel, parts, and repairs. Many of these tractors still lie idle in the field.
Improving the Human Condition through Financial Literacy
By creating initiatives at the government level that are focused on low-income individuals as well as women and youth, who have typically been disenfranchised from making financial gains due to cultural and situational norms, Ilia Zavialov believes that the most vulnerable in these societies can bring themselves up out of poverty and deprivation, giving them a hand up instead of a handout. Similar initiatives have raised some level of economic growth and living conditions, but actual financial literacy still needs to improve, though some organizations are considering using AI to translate financial literacy into localized language, customs, and practices.
As an active National Association of Financial Services Professionals member, Ilia Zavialov has regularly volunteered his time and energy for local youth programs, mentored other industry professionals, and provided valuable guidance and support to help individuals achieve their goals. He believes that by moving this philanthropy onto an international level to provide financial literacy to those most in need, we improve the lives of everyone on our planet, one individual at a time.