World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) is the leading international trade association and development agency for credit unions. WOCCU promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. WOCCU advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.
While it's sometimes hard to quantify success, one thing is certain – the ripple effect and long-term effects of good development work impact more people for generations to come than any of us will know.
Nigeria is frequently cited as one of the most corrupt countries in the world, but its central banker has won two international banking awards. Mallam Lamido Aminu Sanusi has been named as the Central Bank Governor of 2010 for both the African continent and the entire world, by the prestigious Banker Magazine.
The Environmental Economics Unit at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg is being granted SEK 73 million from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), to continue to support six environmental economics research centres in Africa, Central America and China for the period 2011-2014.
The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation , NDIC, has commenced the compilation of the list of Managing Directors and top management staff of the failed microfinance banks whose licences were recently withdrawn by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, with a view to prosecuting them.
Omidyar Network announced an $825,000 grant to Praekelt Foundation to support its pioneering use of mobile technology to drive positive social change. Funded through Omidyar Network's Government Transparency investment area, the grant will be used to extend the Foundation's mobile technology platforms across Africa. Built to take advantage of rapidly growing mobile penetration throughout the continent, these mobile platforms will provide the technological foundation and infrastructure for a variety of initiatives focusing on healthcare, education, human rights and government transparency initiatives.
The grant funded a one day workshop in Lusaka to look at gender issues in rural microfinance programmes. 43 people participated in the workshop, including managers and gender specialists from government ministries, financial institutions, community based organizations and NGOs, donors and colleges. There was also participation from IFAD and FAO.
WAM began in 2003 after women professionals in the microfinance industry, most of them based in Washington, DC, began meeting, at first informally in each others' homes. This growing group of WAM Founders came together to discuss areas of common concern, to decide if a more formal organization made sense, to explore what such an organization might do to support women who work in the microfinance industry and, ultimately, to support the development of the industry itself. After several months of planning and program design, WAM was formally launched in October 2003. Membership has grown steadily since.
Claudia McKay and Mark Pickens from CGAP have pulled together a comprehensive global pricing study on banking services targeting poor, unbanked and underbanked people in Africa, Asia and Brazil. The study examines pricing for services targeting unbanked and underbanked poor people in 10 countries.
The conclusion: mobile banking and other forms of branchless banking are cheaper than traditional banking, but the gap between the two may not be as wide as some may think.
The recent controversy surrounding the microfinance sector has entirely eclipsed the fact that it is the first effort in India to have delivered financial services to remote corners of the country in a self-sustaining manner. The stakes are high for India’s poor, and we have to pave the way for orderly growth in the sector. Here is our view on some key issues that have featured in the current debate.
rise of entrepreneurial innovations that use mainstream financial instruments to facilitate social development.
Corporate social investment (CSI) experts predict that a growing merger between social entrepreneurship and CSI will be one of the world's top trends in the future.
Information Systems specializes in development of software for the financial institutions, offering multi-currency and multi-lingual banking systems with a large variety of modules, based on the latest technologies. We install and support turn-key international Banking Software and Microfinance Software solutions for retail banks, commercial banks, Internet banks and microfinance banks.
Two Social Entrepreneurs one from Morocco and one from Tunisia - were recognized as leading social innovators during a plenary session at the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa, Marrakech, Morocco on 26 October. The awards were conferred by Hilde Schwab, Co-Founder and Chairperson of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship.
Microfinance programs geared toward African women can actually help heal victims of rape the same way that psychological counseling does – by restoring self-respect.
US$2.3 trillion has been spent by the global North on international aid in the last five decades. Nevertheless, close to half of the world's population still lives in poverty. One in five live in extreme poverty. Aid is not working as well as it should. Unless we can inject the spirit of innovation into this provision, the extreme poor we try to help in places like Bangladesh will continue to remain poor.
After several years of very high profile attention on mobile money and other branchless banking schemes, we think it’s time to test the hype. Or more accurately, we’ve wanted to for awhile. But acquiring good data is really, really hard. We’ve been unable to say in anything but a fragmented, mostly anecdotal way whether the unbanked really use branchless banking, what they use it for, if it saves them any money, and what more they might want (but aren’t getting yet). Just because we are excited about branchless banking doesn’t mean it is living up to the promises we make on its behalf.
A significant number of people using new technologies such as mobile phones to access financial services in developing countries are completely new clients for the financial services industry, according to new research by CGAP. The growing interest of so-called branchless banking in recent years has, until now, largely lacked data showing whether it delivers on potential to bring the poor into the formal economy.
A new initiative to expand these programs to the broader market called the Small Business Banking Network (SBBN) will launch in November. The SBBN is designed to bolster the capacity and effectiveness of financial institutions to profitably serve small businesses in developing countries, helping to close the gap between microfinance and commercial banking.
The Norwegian Microfinance Initiative (NMI), a partnership between the Norwegian public and private sectors that provides assistance for microfinance institutions (MFIs) in developing countries, recently loaned KES 325 million (approximately USD 4.03 million) to Kenya Women Finance Trust – Deposit Taking Microfinance (KWFT- DTM), a microfinance institution based in Nairobi, Kenya, and UGX 1.25 billion (approximately USD 548,000) to the Uganda Finance Trust (UFT), an MFI in Kampala, Uganda, to support microenterprises.
Women entrepreneurs constitute one of the key drivers of Africa's sustainable growth. As Africa's lead development partner, the African Development Bankactively supports women entrepreneurs.
Canada will invest $43.4-million in new aid to Francophone African countries, the most tangible product of Stephen Harper’s trip to the weekend’s summit of Francophone nations. The funding, part of $1.1-billion in aid that the Conservative government promised in June to protect mothers and their children at the G8 summit of leading developed nations in Huntsville, Muskoka, will help protect 1.1 million women and children from malnourishment and sexual violence.
The apex bank yesterday said it had granted provisional approval for new licences to 121 out of the 224 microfinance institutions, whose licences were recently withdrawn.
The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) at Colorado State University provides innovative training in community-based development (online and face-to-face), consultation, evaluation, and project support services for individuals and governmental, international non-governmental, and community-based organizations around the world.
Village Earth's mission is to help reconnect communities to the resources that promote human well-being by enhancing social and political empowerment, community self-reliance and self-determination.
Lyon created a system to bring formal financial services to microfinance institutions and poor entrepreneurs via a mobile phone. He believes the new software, to be launched by the organization he founded, FrontlineSMS:Credit, could change the world of microfinance by changing the way the poor interact with the institutions.
Rural Finance is about providing financial services for people living in rural areas. This Learning Centre aims to assist organisations in developing countries to build their capacity to deliver improved financial services which meet the needs of rural households and businesses.
KfW Entwicklungsbank is helping improve internet access in Africa: the East Africa Submarine Cable System (EASSy) provides about 250 million people on the continent with international communication through telephone and internet.
Nigeria's microfinance sector has failed to make the expected impact on the economy due to misconception by the operators, but this will soon change.
Residents in sub-Saharan African countries report a wide range of awareness about the availability of microfinance lending in their communities, suggesting these institutions remain locally inaccessible to many who would benefit most from using them. Malawians (65%) and Ugandans (63%) are the most likely to say they are aware of these institutions in their communities, while respondents from Ivory Coast (18%), Democratic Republic of the Congo (16%), and Zimbabwe (15%) are the least likely to say the same.
This AfricaFocus contains a diverse selection of recent books likely to be of interest and new to AfricaFocus readers. You will find, for example, new books by Africa's distinguished elders, such as Achebe, wa Thiong'o, and Mandela. Selected new books from publishers such as Africa World Press, HSRC Press, and Aflame Books. Books on topical themes such as SMS activism and other ICT developments, on India and China's relations with Africa, and on xenophobia and migration. And more.
Mobile payment users worldwide are forecast to increase 2.1 percent to 109 million by the end of 2010, a US-based research
firm said in a report.
Mobile technology has the greatest chance of delivering financial services to Africa’s estimated 325 million low-income, un-banked people. Examples of African financial innovations abound and the results are being felt across the continent, where mobile phone penetration continues to skyrocket. Dianna Games writes about the success stories and the need for investors to think from the ground up.
SAB is a French vendor of core banking solutions with an international presence, mainly in francophile institutions across Europe, Africa, Middle East and the Pacific. Established in 1989, SAB is an independent group that publishes an integrated software package for banking and financial institutions: the SAB solution for front to back office banking operations.
The Ghana Islamic Microfinance www.ghanaislamicmicrofinance an upcoming microfinance institution that seeks to offer ethical micro financing in Ghana, campaign against predatory loans and offer interest free loans for both the Muslim and Non-Muslim community in Ghana have learnt with shock the passing away of Ibrahim Shaributu the brother of the National Chief Imam Sheik Nuhu Shaributu.
Nigerian micro-finance banks can now get as much as N1 billion loan to finance small scale businesses in the country through a new partnership between the Suisse Bank Plc of London,Smart Links Limited of Dubai and the African Capital and Business Support Limited.
The loan being offered by the partnership is interest free for the first one year and subject to repayment in four years thereafter,the Vice Chairman of ACBS,Benjamin Aduli said yesterday in Abuja.
World leaders put the finishing touches on plans to build a more stable global economy on Sunday but backed away from one-size-fits-all pledges as two years of crisis give way to an uneven recovery.
The G-20 is the premier forum for our international economic development that promotes open and constructive discussion between industrial and emerging-market countries on key issues related to global economic stability. By contributing to the strengthening of the international financial architecture and providing opportunities for dialogue on national policies, international co-operation, and international financial institutions, the G-20 helps to support growth and development across the globe.
Rwanda's leasing industry is expected to grow from $30 million (Rwf17.5 billion) in 2010 to $60 million (Rwf35.1 billion) next year, the President of Rwanda Leasing Association, Sanjeev Anand said during the closing ceremony of the IFC Rwanda Leasing programme.
As world leaders gather for the G8 summit in Canada, Machrine Birungi visits Francis Kamara at his farm in Uganda to see if the promises made at Gleneagles in 2005 have benefitted him and his country.
The micro-finance sector in Ghana and Nigeria has received a boost through a 40 million Euro fund, which was launched by Goodwell Investments of The Netherlands, Alitheia Capital of Nigeria and JCS Investments from Ghana.
Technology-leading African microfinance institution continues its commitment to innovation and delivery of enhanced banking solutions with field-based account origination solution. In keeping with emerging trends in microfinance banking, Women’s World Banking Ghana (WWBG) continues its commitment to innovation with the deployment of a digital writing solution from ExpeData .
As part of efforts to bridge the gap between the banked and the unbanked population of Nigeria, eTranzact in conjunction with International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, have embarked on a pilot project for the rural areas in Nigeria called Rural Telephony Project (RTP) MobileMoney.
Sunny Mahant had been working as a product marketing manager for nine years at Cisco when he experienced an epiphany on a trip to India.
On that trip, Mahant and his wife, photographer Geidre Nakutyte, witnessed firsthand the brutish conditions under which very young children work in India, and the extreme poverty suffered by their families. He came home determined to make a difference in the lives of young Indians.
Offbeat financal avenues find buyers slowly but steadily. With the global meltdown behind, European debt crisis ahead, global economists are busy pondering new sectors like microfinance, carbon finance, water credit and so on to find hope for market expansion.
Barclays and international development organisations CARE International (CARE) and Plan have launched Banking on Change in Ghana, a unique and pioneering microfinance initiative aimed at reaching half a million people in ten countries across the world and sixty three thousand people in Ghana.
Ghana is on test as it prepares for oil production. But oil endowment itself is not a doom. How it is managed could make it a boom or a doom.
While it requires a lot of sacrifice and patience to make the boom work for the economy, the country cannot equally ignore the higher price to pay if the oil resources are not managed well.
As applicants await approval to operate mobile payment in Nigeria, stakeholders complain that the issue of low awareness must be addressed to ensure success
Business confidence fell unexpectedly in the second quarter of this year, led by a plunge in retail trade and the vehicle industry and suggesting that economic growth has slowed, a leading survey showed yesterday.
Lack of sufficient capital to support Small Medium Enterprise (SMEs) is said be responsible for the failure of microfinance banks in the country, just as the management of TechnoGlass Industries Limited(TGI) lamented the huge monthly electricity bill paid to Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) without getting the desired services from PHCN.
The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with six Microfinance Banks on the provision of micro credit for small and medium scale enterprises in the country. The pact will also enable business owners in the country to benefit from entrepreneurship training programmes put together by SMEDAN and the microfinance banks.
Despite the challenges that the board and management of Integrated Microfinance Bank, IMFB, have been faced with, it is determined to come out stronger and bigger. In this interview, IMFB's Managing Director, Mr. Adamu Ibrahim, takes us through the events of the past 9 months, steps being taken to regain public confidence and the recent injection of funds by an investor.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is set to increase the minimum paid-up capital of Unit Micro-Finance Banks (MFBs) by 500 per cent to N100 million. It also increased that of State MFBs by 100 per cent to N2 billion. Under the micro-finance bank policy introduced in 2006, there are two categories of MFBs -State MFBs and Unit MFBs.
For little Nkamere Precious, Opayemi Toluwani, Ebuka Uba, Umoh Uwana and Miss Ngozi Ogudu, the 2010 Children’s Day will ever be remembered for the impact it is going to make in their lives. It was the day they were rewarded for their outstanding performance and achievements for the year with a minimum of between 10 As and 14 As out of 12 to 16 subjects they sat for in their various schools.
Once upon a time, Sumitra used to roam the streets of the Indian city of Ahmedabad, collecting discarded caps which could be recycled and sold back to manufacturers such as Coca-Cola.
Clickatell, a vendor of messaging, is providing in-country SMS alert services to Satelite Microfinance Bank.
Ladi Smith, director, SIAO, in this interview with Daniel Obi, says Credit Awareness Nigeria Initiative is geared towards sensitising lenders on the need for credit information to avoid non-performing loans.
The summit will focus on urban poverty by bringing attendees to visit any of the seven leading microfinance organizations in Kenya.
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been advised to shelve its proposed plan to conduct examination for all managing directors of registered microfinance banks across the country.
Will regulating the microfinance market in Egypt help breach a gap between supply and demand? Sherine Nasr seeks answers
Bankers without Borders, a nonprofit that recruits finance executives to volunteer their time and expertise at microfinance projects in developing countries, has secured a $3m grant from JPMorgan Chase to expand the programme.
NAMIBIA's first micro-finance bank is a reality after the Bank of Namibia (BoN) yesterday granted Fides Bank Namibia a permanent banking licence.
Khula Enterprise Finance (KEF) of South Africa provides funding to financial institutions to be channeled to socially-oriented causes.
Bill and Melinda Gates announced plans Friday to invest $10 billion in the fight against a number of illnesses including AIDS and said the record donation could save nearly nine million lives. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, they said the 10-year program will focus on vaccines for AIDS, tuberculosis, rota virus and pneumonia.
Microfinance leaders from 35 countries have already registered for the Africa-Middle East Regional Microcredit Summit to be held April 7-10, 2010 in Nairobi, Kenya. The Summit will be the largest microfinance gathering ever held in Africa and the Middle East. Her Royal Highness Princess Máxima of The Netherlands, one of the keynote speakers, will join Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Muhammad Yunus, BRAC Chair Fazle Abed, CARE CEO Helene Gayle, and Kenya’s Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Mr. Uhuru Kenyatta at the Summit in Nairobi.
Chairman of FirstBank Plc, Mr. Oba Otudeko recentlyaddressed the board and management of the bank. In the address, Otudeko who was recently elevated to the chairman of the board, pointed the way forward for the bank.
At the fourth Microfinance Conference in Abuja, Nigeria, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, announced that all microfinance bank CEOs would be required to pass a CBN administered exam in order to continue managing their banks. A training program will be held during the first quarter of this year, with certificates being issued at the end of the exercise. Any bank that does not comply with the rules will have its license withdrawn.
Information Systems specializes in development of software for the financial institutions, offering multi-currency and multi-lingual banking systems with a large variety of modules, based on the latest technologies. We install and support turn-key international Banking Software and Microfinance Software solutions for retail banks, commercial banks, Internet banks and microfinance banks.
Be sure to read Founder, Dana Dakin’s Story of how she traveled to Ghana in 2003 on the occasion of her sixtieth birthday to find a village and start a microlending program.
Women’s World Banking, Ghana, (IWWBG) arguably the most innova¬tive microfinance institution in Ghana has won an award at the recent Women's World Banking Global Network and Capital Markets meeting held in New York.
Africa's economy of cash handovers and stowed-away savings has long been a hindrance to the continent's economic growth, as well as a cause and excuse to deny credit to its poor.
But now, at a time when 10 million Ghanaians own a phone, the world's banks, cell phone networks and aid agencies are coming here to flip one thing into the other — to tweak a few features on a sim card, circumvent some regulations, and voila: The ordinary pre-paid cell phone becomes something not unlike a checking account - a way to text money from person to person throughout this intricate economy.
Land acquisitions are on the increase in Africa and other continents, raising the risk that poor people will be evicted or lose access to land, water, and other resources, according to the first detailed study of the trend.
The study has been realized by the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) at the request of UN Food and Agriculture Organization and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). It warns that such deals can bring many opportunities (guaranteed outlets, employment, investment in infrastructures, increases in agricultural productivity) but can also cause great harm if local people are excluded from decisions about allocating land and if their land rights are not protected.
The report highlights a number of misconceptions about what have been termed land grabs. It found that land-based investment has been rising over the past five years. But while foreign investment dominates, domestic investors are also playing a big role in land acquisitions.
International financiers ramped up efforts to stave off economic recession in Africa with the establishment of a $15 billion fund to support small and medium-sized enterprises that have been the main drivers of growth in the continent over the past decade. The fund, an initiative of the African Development Bank (AfDB), the French Development Agency (AFD), and Development Bank of Southern Africa, will support intra-Africa trade, boost lending to agribusiness, and finance key infrastructure that supports businesses across the continent.
The Gates Foundation has pledged $40 million to independent think tanks in developing countries, starting with a 24 institutions in Africa. The aim of the initiative is to provide long-term funding to organizations so they can produce sound research that influences national policy debate and decision making, said Mark Suzman, director of policy and advocacy for the Gates Foundation's global development program.
The Southern Africa Trust is to present findings from the regional research study on micro-finance and poverty. Commissioned in 2008, the study was to examine the nature of the micro-finance sector and its impact on poverty eradication in the SADC region.
At the end of December last year, Nigeria had 815 licensed MFBs, putting itself in the first position globally on the number of practicing MFBs. However, the Managing Director, Elim MFB, Mrs. Ifeoma Ana, said that in spite the number of licensed MFBs operating in the country, micro financing would remain a mirage to the people except positive steps were taken to ensure that the sub-sector was effective in alleviating poverty.
This seaside city is known as a rich stockpile of art deco architecture, the hub of Morocco's economic growth and the setting of an all-time classic movie starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. But Casablanca is also the capital of a bleaker aspect of modern Morocco -- sprawling slums, where huge families are packed into shanties with tin roofs rusted by the ocean winds, and goats and donkeys munch stray garbage.
Clickatell, messaging provider for financial services, has been selected by Fortis Microfinance Bank to provide SMS Receipts(TM) to thousands of retail banking customers throughout Nigeria.
Sean Moroney, chairman of AITEC Africa, whose core business since 1987 has been focussed on ICT publishing, event management, professional development and training in Africa, spoke to Hilary Okeke on the forthcoming AITEC Banking and Payment Technologies Conference and other issues.
Few women in Africa work in regular, formal sector jobs, and even those generally earn too little to escape from poverty. Decades after the world officially recognized a human right to gender equality, women remain largely excluded from the upper ranks of government and business, earn less than their male co-workers and face an array of customs, traditions and attitudes that limit their opportunities.
A new children's book tells the story of what happens when a young boy living in Ghana in West Africa borrows a few coins from his village's collective fund. The boy, Kojo, has an idea: to buy one hen. He walks two hours to a chicken farm in a neighboring village, and he finds the hen he wants — plump and brown, with a bright red comb. He buys that hen — with the hopes of selling some of the eggs she lays in order to buy more hens. And he does buy more hens — and more and more of them.
During The Aspen Environment Forum Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan presented the King Hussein Leadership Prize which recognizes outstanding leadership in promoting human rights, sustainability and world peace. And the winner was Bob Freling, Executive Director of an American non profit called SELF -- the Solar Electric Light Fund, which has been solar-powering villages around the world.
Sound policies and regulations for microinsurance in Nigeria will encourage innovation, investment, sustainability and growth in the insurance sector, while protecting consumers and the soundness of institutions. The overall objective, according to the author, is to provide value-for-money products on a massive scale to the low-income population.
Governments bargain for “fair deals” that enhance development: Large mining operations in Africa have generated big profits for foreign companies, with little local benefit. Now governments are trying to harness more mining revenues for development purposes.
New research reveals that mobile financial services offer some of the best commissions in the world — threatening to knock toothpaste from its lofty perch as the most lucrative product for profit hungry merchants. CGAP, a global microfinance centre, has listed M-Pesa as the world’s biggest mobile banking success.
Microfinance – previously seen as an area bound to make perennial losses - is rapidly growing into one of the important asset classes that investors are hunting for.
Even though there have been no dramatic developments since Parliament enacted the Microfinance Act two years ago in Kenya, it is turning out that this is one of the most lucrative areas of investment for both equity and debt investors.
The idea all began when Emeka Okafor mused aloud at ned.com, “While the ICT space has developed a head of steam in some parts of Africa… a ‘Maker Philosophy’ is yet to occur. I would be interested in getting a sense of everyone’s thoughts on a Maker type Faire within the continent… an event where Afrigadget type innovations,inventions and initiatives can be brought to life, supported,amplified,propagated etc.”
This can be dangerous.
Today, along with Afrigadget and the International Development Design Summit - and with a nod from Maker Faire - Maker Faire Africa is moving forward into planning stages for a summer 2009 kick-off.
The Innovation Fund is a special facility within EFInA that seeks to promote innovation in the development and deployment of financial services and thus expand financial access to the underserved population in Nigeria. EFInA will share the risk of developing and implementing new innovations by providing a grant subsidy (up to 50%) for new commercial projects.
The idea of an inter- bank market for microfinance banks is no doubt an interesting one. For starters, such a platform will provide an opportunity for increased mobility of funds among microfinance banking operators, thereby reducing the cost of funding and improving the net interest margin by providing these micro-credit banks with a solid funding base to address short and medium-term requirements. But as laudable as the initiative may be, it is not without challenges as regards effectiveness, considering that the microfinance institutions are spread haphazardly all over the country. This, surely, is unlike the money market association for commercial banks, which has about 24 branches with headquarters in Lagos.
The National Employment Fund wants to improve the performance of microfinance institutions in Cameroon, considering the role the sector plays in the country's economy. A workshopo was organised to that effect yesterday in Yaounde to build the capacity of workers and render the sector more productive.
Jessica Jackley, co-founder of Kiva, the world's first person-to-person micro-lending Web site, spoke at the Shell Auditorium April 14. Jackley was invited by Rebecca Richards-Kortum, Beyond Traditional Borders Director, as part of the Rice 360 initiative. Kiva, which means "agreement" or "unity" in Swahili, has helped nearly 500,000 lenders across the globe loan approximately $67 million to individual entrepreneurs from 45 developing countries since its founding three and a half years ago, the organization's Web site said.
About one third of the world's people spend nights in darkness, fearful of venturing out, unable to read, cook, sew or do anything else but sleep. But a business man in Houston, Texas named Mark Bent is on a mission to change that with flashlights that use the sun's energy to light up poor homes and villages at night.
Some progress has already been achieved, and this is encouraging. However, more needs to be done to introduce democratic and secular values into the relationships between men and women. In the absence of these, the concept of gender equality is a mere fantasy.
The G-20 agreement is a historic and watershed achievement in international development. Leaders from developed and developing countries got together and reaffirmed the interconnectedness of the global economy and individuals around the world. These leaders jointly agreed to tackle economic problems around the world with same strategies and expected outcomes. The Agreement is a good first step. However, Africa and other poor regions of the world still face significant economic and development challenges. The agreement falls short in addressing these challenges.
Dana Air, Nigeria’s newest carrier, has been named the Best ICT-Driven Airline of the year at the National ICT Merit Award (NIMA) held at the prestigious Eko Hotel & Suites on Thursday, April 9, 2009. NIMA is an annual ICT award organised by Technology Africa in recognition of individuals and organisations who are at the forefront of technology deployment and adoption in the country.
Unitus is deepening its commitment to East Africa by opening the Africa Microfinance Growth Centre, the first leadership development programme of its kind for early-stage microfinance providers in East Africa. The programme, developed in partnership with Financial Sector Deepening (FSD), will graduate CEOs and senior managers with improved strategy, leadership, and execution ability needed to rapidly grow their organizations and expand financial services to families living on less than $2 a day.
The Government of Uganda is to set up a body to license and regulate the work of the Savings and Credit Co-operative Organizations (SACCOs) of Uganda, according to a press release on the Ugandan newspaper Monitor.
CGAP, a microfinance group based at the World Bank, is supporting WIZZIT Bank to deliver banking services to poor people in South Africa's small towns and rural areas. WIZZIT is a division of the South African Bank of Athens Limited.
Planet Finance President, Jacques Attali, on Monday, March 30, 2009, in Tunis, Tunisia, said that micro-finance could seriously help cushion the impact of the global financial crisis on Africa. Mr. Attali made the statement during a presentation chaired by the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group President, Donald Kaberuka.
New York based Women's World Banking (WWB) has signed on UBA Microfinance Bank as its only network partner in Nigeria. With the admittance of the microfinance subsidiary of United Bank for Africa Plc as a network partner of the WWB, UBA Microfinance Bank has joined the global network of partner microfinance institutions and banks including ASA, the number 1, and other top 9 Microfinance Finance Banks in the world.
As G20 leaders gather in London on 2 April, the focus of their agenda will be on working together to promote effective, coordinated responses to the global economic crisis and to the state of global trade. In the context of the crisis, the immediate priority of many governments and trade experts is rightly to create and implement a strategy that will offset declining trade and investment, particularly in developing countries where the crisis threatens to impede economic growth and development progress made in recent years. In an effort to address these pressing issues and provide suggestions for G20 leaders’ deliberations, ICTSD partnered with the Global Economic Governance Programme (GEG) to gather short essays from a broad range of scholars and experts around the world.
According to Mr. Attali, who is President of PlaNet Finance, micro-credit plays a key role in development efforts targeting the poorest segments of the population, and micro-finance sources need to be preserved at a time when the global financial crisis is severely hitting Africa. The continent has made steady progress over the last decade, building the foundations for higher growth rates and poverty reduction.
Jacqueline Novogratz tells a moving story of an encounter in a Nairobi slum with Jane, a former prostitute, whose dreams of escaping poverty, of becoming a doctor and of getting married were fulfilled in an unexpected way.
Presenting a paper during Micro-Finance Investors Forum, organized by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), held in Kano, Dogara believes that Islamic Micro-Finance could similarly be an excellent substitute for the conventional micro-finance currently being implemented in the country.
About half of all African enterprises are owned by women. “We are not waiting. We are moving,” says Pilda Modjadji, a founding member of the Pankop Women Farmers Forum in Mpumalanga, South Africa. “We mean business.”
Led by a consortium of partners, project supports GOE’s Safety Net Program, a new nationwide development project that will assist poor, rural households in food insecure areas that benefit from the Government of Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP). This three year project will move households towards graduation from PSNP through market-driven approaches to diversify their livelihoods, build assets and link to financial services and markets.
The global economy will shrink this year for the first time since the second world war as the "Great Recession" ravages businesses, consumers and financial institutions around the world, the International Monetary Fund warned. Speaking in Tanzania, IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said the economic downturn would be more severe than previously thought.
At almost every forum on microfinance banking nowadays, the threats being posed by the involvement of commercial banks in the microfinance sector is a constant topic of discussion. This is rather considered as very strange for the operators of microfinance banking to feel threatened by the involvement of the commercial banks in a sector where the more players we have, the merrier it is for the country and micro/small businesses especially for the active poor in the land. The perceived threat is considered strange because Nigeria is still regarded as under banked, even with the entry of the microfinance banks into the economy. The average bank density in Nigeria is said to be an outlet for 32,000 people in the urban area and one outlet to 57,000 people in rural areas.
Lamit implement modern technology, broadband satellite internet , virtual private networks (VPN) through satellite, video surveillance service anywhere in the world, Voice over IP (VoIP) communication solutions, mobile satellite communication systems through satellite, all with the QoS standard active. They are a company whose services has been already developed in Europe, Africa, Middle East, Far East and the Americas. Our portfolio creation, with clients based in the most inaccessible locations, worldwide, was possible due to a young, innovative and future-looking team.
One of the major challenges confronting micro finance banks in Nigeria is the ability to maintain liquidity and give maximum satisfaction to customers. Managing Director of OPENGATE MFB Mr. Nureni Yusuf said that in order to break even, financial institutions must be willing to forecast their cash flow and manage a balanced treasury.
Launched in the fall of 2003, WAM was created to support women in the microfinance industry. The mission of Women Advancing Microfinance International is to advance and support women working in microfinance through education and training, by promoting leadership opportunities, and by increasing visibility of their participation and talent while maintaining a work/life balance.
With more than half of the adult population unable to access retail banking services, the introduction of microfinance banking by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was welcomed by Nigeria’s development partners and the general populace.
With the admittance of the microfinance subsidiary of United Bank for Africa Plc as a network partner of the WWB, UBA Microfinance Bank has joined the global network of partner microfinance institutions and banks including ASA, the number one and four others in the list of the top 10 Microfinance Finance Banks in the world.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said it has concluded arrangement with 24 Nigerian banks to raise N200 billion funds as part of efforts to support agricultural sector and to ensure availability of food in the country.
The Federal Government is fine-tuning a multi sectoral arrangemments to create one million jobs capable of generating several thousands more employment opportunities this fiscal year, Youth Development Minister, Senator Akinlabi Olasunkanmi, has disclosed.
Microfinance refers to financial services provided to low-income people, usually to help support self-employment. By providing very poor families with small loans to invest in their microenterprises, Village Banking empowers them to create their own jobs.
Joe DiVanna writes on competitive strategies in Africa banking. To be successful, African banks must learn to think like customers, spend time with customers and ascertain how banking can be used to facilitate today’s changing African lifestyles. The key is to change our perspective on banking and payments. Where bankers see transactions, customers simply see payments.
Welcome to this blog about Microfinance, Innovations and Sustainable Development