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Feb 2007
India: Microfinance bill puts Nabard in regulatory seat
February, 28 2007
Mumbai, India - A new microfinance law is underway, with the Union Cabinet on Friday clearing the bill despite an opposition from some official quarters citing lacunae in it. The bill will be tabled in the current session of Parliament. ...
Nigeria: IFC, MTN Partner On Job Creation
February, 28 2007
Lagos, Nigeria - The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has signed a Linkage Cooperation Agreement with MTN Nigeria Foundation for a joint project that will create opportunities for more than 1,000 rural based women in the country to earn income by reselling telephony services. ...
USA: A Second Look at Microfinance
February, 27 2007
United States - A study by the Cato Institute's Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity questions the effectiveness of microcredit in the developing world ...
USA: The Future of Microfinance and the World Bank's Role In It
February, 27 2007
United States - The director of the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor discusses what is and isn't needed to help the poor ...
Oikocredit Results 2006: Poverty Alleviation Needs Focus on Social Impact
February, 27 2007
Amersfoort, Netherlands - As Oikocredit finalized its audited financial statements last week, all figures confirmed that 2006 was another year of exceptional growth. Far beyond the objectives of consolidation after the 2005 microfinance boom, Oikocredit answered the increasing demand for credit for development and the rising interest for socially responsible investments. The portfolio outstanding amounts now to 208 million euros when the member capital flirts with the 300 million Euros ...
Microfinance Investment Comes of Age
February, 26 2007
New York - Credit Suisse and ACCION Sponsor Capital Markets Conferenc ...
USA: Gearing Up for the 2007 Social Enterprise Conference
February, 26 2007
Cambridge, MA, United States - "Social entrepreneur" is a much bandied about term that few seem to be able to define. On Sunday, March 4th, the Social Enterprise Conference will bring together 1,000 students and practitioners to explore this increasingly expansive field ...
Rich Nations Plan Micro-Credit Project for Africa
February, 26 2007
Africa - THE G8, the group of eight richest countries in the world, is expected to unveil a "special microfinance initiative" for Africa during its annual summit. Details of the package are being worked out and will be announced when the 33rd G8 summit gets underway in Germany in June ...
Kashmir: JK Bank launches microfinance in Jammu
February, 25 2007
Kashmir - Under its microfinance programme, Jammu and Kashmir Bank has started an ambitious programme to provide hassle free financial assistance to small businesses, like artisans, agri-business activities and others at cheaper rates ...
Grameen comes to the USA
February, 22 2007
New York - Grameen Trust, the Bangladesh-based charitable arm of the Grameen Bank, is starting up a microfinance business in the USA called Grameen America. [I couldn't find a web site for this yet although there is a job posting for a CEO.] Grameen Bank has been a pioneer in microfinance and recently was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize along with its founder Muhammad Yunus ...
PlaNet Finance and the United Nations Development Programme Launch the Programme for the Support of the Associates and Communities Struggling Against HIV/AIDS in Burkina Faso
February, 21 2007
Burkina Faso - French-based PlaNet Finance, umbrella organization of the PlaNet Microfinance Fund, has teamed up with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to launch the Programme for the Support of the Associates and Communities struggling against HIV/AIDS (PAMAC). The program, whose goal is to provide guarantee funds to people with HIV/AIDS, began in January of 2007 in Burkina Faso, a West African landlocked nation with a population of 13.2 mn, 2.3 percent of which are infected with AIDS. ...
Vision 2015: What does the future of microfinance holds
February, 21 2007
United States - Will today's focus on microfinance gather enough momentum to reach the billions who still lack access to financial services, or will it simply fade away? What do the next 10 years look like for the microfinance industry and how can we plan for them within our own organizations? From February 26 to March 2, CGAP will host a virtual conference to address some of the most salient issues affecting the future of microfinanc ...
Uganda: Front Page Expands
February, 20 2007
Uganda - AS the micro credit industry continues to boom, Front Page Microfinance one of the leading industry players in Uganda, has announced plans to bring more members of the middle class into its client base. ...
Gates Foundation Provides $15.4 Million to Opportunity International to Help Build Microfinance Banks in Five African Nations
February, 20 2007
Oak Brook, Illinois, USA - Gates Foundation Contributions Will Help Millions in Africa Work Their Way Out of Povert ...
Pakistan: That's life
February, 19 2007
Pakistan - We live in a country where, despite high growth rates, more people move toward the poverty line every year. And the growth rates are explained by the growing disparity between the rich and the poor -- something our government is finally beginning to recognise ...
IFAD to Build Nine Community Banks in Sierra Leone
February, 19 2007
Sierra Leone - The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) which is a Strategic partner in the development of Micro-finance through Agricultural processes has been reported to be making final arrangements for the establishment of about nine Community Banks throughout Sierra Leone as a way of enhancing the status of poor Rural Farmers in the Country ...
Microloans grow slightly
February, 19 2007
South Africa - THE average size of loans paid out by micro-lenders increased from R1664 at the end of August to R1801 at the end of November, the National Credit Regulator (NCR) said today. ...
Bill takes aim at microfinance in informal sector
February, 19 2007
Jakarta - Even though there is no exact figure on how much of a contribution informal microfinancing firms make to the economy, it is common knowledge that many -- if not most -- small and medium enterprises (SMEs) here rely on them ...
Peru's Mibanco deploys Chase Cooper operational risk management platform
February, 19 2007
London - Chase Cooper, a market leader in the provision of risk management solutions, today announced that MIBANCO, the leading private financial institution serving micro enterprises in Peru with 74 offices nationwide has selected 'aCCelerate' as it's platform for managing Operational Risk throughout the group ...
Bangladesh Nobel winner names new political party
February, 18 2007
Bangladesh - Bangladesh's Nobel peace prize winner Muhammad Yunus on Sunday announced the name of his new political party, saying he felt compelled to enter politics ...
SNS Asset Management launches a micro-credit fund: SNS Institutional Microfinance Fund in Partnership with Developing World Markets and Triple Jump
February, 16 2007
United States - SNS Asset Management will launch a large institutional investment fund which aims to provide resources for microfinance institutions (MFIs) worldwide. SNS Asset Management is a Dutch-based asset manager for institutional investors and currently manages assets exceeding 15 bn euros. The SNS Institutional Microfinance Fund has a target size of USD 196,028,000 which is believed to impact around 4 million people in developing regions. ...
The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the CAF invest in MicroCred Mexico
February, 15 2007
Paris - In 25 January 2007, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) confirmed their investment in MicroCred Mexico, taking a 15% and 9% stake in the capital of MicroCred Mexico, respectively. As shareholders, IFC and CAF will be joining the other owners namely MicroCred S.A., PlaNet Finance Mexico and the Mexican private equity funds, Protama ...
A Second Look at Microfinance: The Sequence of Growth and Credit in Economic History
February, 15 2007
United States - Thomas Dichter is the author of Despite Good Intentions: Why Development Assistance to the Third World Has Failed (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2003). He has worked in international development since 1964 in a variety of institutions including the World Bank, the United Nations Development Programme, the Peace Corps, and numerous nongovernmental organizations ...
Money isn't everything in micro-credit
February, 15 2007
Malaysia - Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank, is widely lauded for lifting millions of Bangladeshi peasants out of poverty through his micro-lending initiative. He awes his audiences with stories of how loans of just a few dollars can be life-transforming for the recipients, allowing debt-ridden villagers to free themselves from the clutches of ruthless moneylenders, or enabling small-scale entrepreneurs to get on their feet ...
Innovation fund
February, 15 2007
Chandigarh - Aiming to support innovative, risk-friendly, unconventional and pro-poor experiments in farm, non-farm and micro-credit areas with the possibility of promoting livelihood opportunities and employment in rural areas, the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has created an innovation fund ...
Angolan Microfinance Institution KixiCredito Gains Independence from its Canadian Nonprofit Parent Organization, Development Workshop
February, 15 2007
Angola - Development Workshop Canada, a non-profit microcredit organization, launched KixiCredito as Angola’s first commercial microfinance institution. Its parent non-profit, Development Workshop, has been making loans averaging USD 100 since 1999 and has lent the equivalent of USD 5 mn but has relied on donations ...
UK plans ‘financial inclusion’ fund for developing world
February, 14 2007
United Kingdom - The UK plans to set up a “financial inclusion” fund to help advise poor people in the developing world on how to use loans, savings and payment services and how to avoid unscrupulous providers. ...
Pakistan: PM approves strategy to expand microfinance outreachto 3 mln households
February, 14 2007
Islamabad, Pakistan - Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz has approved the strategy to expand microfinance outreach from one million to three million households by 2010.He was chairing a meeting here Wednesday to review the strategy prepared by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) to increase the coverage of microfinance sector in Pakistan. ...
Transforming lives through microfinance
February, 14 2007
Andhra Pradesh, India - From child labour to IIT Chennai has been a long and arduous journey for Samuel. He would have ended like many child labourers in Andhra Pradesh had his mother Iyamma not taken a loan from a village Self Help Group (SHG) about a decade ago ...
Mohammed Yunus of Grameen Bank Expresses Interest in Translating his Success in Microfinance to Bangladeshi Politics
February, 14 2007
Bangladesh - According to the Indo Asian New Service and the India Daily, Bangladeshi Nobel Laureate Mohammed Yunus of the Grameen Foundation announced that he would join the political process in Bangladesh ...
BBVA earmarks €200m for the world’s first private microfinance network
February, 13 2007
Spain - The Bank creates the BBVA Microfinance Foundation Francisco González says, “BBVA wants to make microfinance accessible to the poorest levels of society. It is therefore launching a revolutionary project in international banking ...
Opportunity Micro Insurance Agencies Open in Ghana and the Philippines
February, 13 2007
Ghana / Philippines - Micro Insurance Agency, an Opportunity International subsidiary, builds and operates insurance companies in developing countries that provide the poor with access to affordable insurance products. The Micro Insurance Agency is the world’s first insurance broker exclusively serving the low-income market with life, health and crop insurance products. ...
Grameen Foundation Fights Poverty By Speeding Up Loan Processing
February, 13 2007
United States - The Grameen Foundation is creating open source software specifically for microfinance institutions. They say their software will help the poor by lowering transaction costs and fraud and speeding up loan processing. Operational constraints can limit the impact of microfinance institutions and the Grameen Foundation's open source software project is potentially a creative solution to a perennial problem ...
CGAP Announces Its 9 Technology Picks
February, 12 2007
United States - CGAP, the World Bank associated microfinance agency, announced its nine technology partners. Quoting the CGAP press release, the chosen nine are as follows: ...
Global Money Transfer Pilot Uses Mobile To Benefit Migrant Workers And The Unbanked
February, 12 2007
Barcelona, Spain - GSMA and MasterCard piloting a programme to make it far easier and cost-effective to transfer remittances globall ...
CBN Tasked on Microfinance Growth
February, 11 2007
Lagos, Nigeria - Managing Director of Susu Microfinance Bank, Mrs. Toyin Adeniji, has called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to create an enabling environment, which when entrenched into the banking sector, would help foster the growth of microfinance organisations in the country ...
World Bank, National Bank Launch USD 15 mln Project
February, 10 2007
Ethiopia - Vice Governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), Alemseged Assefa, and Mr. Ishac Diwan, the World Bank Country Director for Ethiopia, Thursday launched a USD 15 million financial sector capacity building project that seeks to strengthen the financial system and increase access to finance for the private sector ...
MFIs face cash crunch as ICICI Bank holds back funds
February, 10 2007
Bengalore, India - Close to a year after the crackdown on microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Andhra Pradesh, some of the leading MFIs in the country are facing a cash crunch due to a halt in the flow of funds from ICICI Bank under its partnership lending programme. ICICI Bank is the largest lender to MFIs, with an exposure to the sector upwards of Rs 2,300 crore. Half this amount is committed through the partnership lending model, with the rest being term loans. ...
MicroCred Group officially inaugurates MicroCred Madagascar on February, 7th in Antananarivo.
February, 09 2007
Madagascar - The official inauguration of MicroCred Madagascar took place last Wednesday February 7th at its head office in Antananarivo. The General Director of the Treasury representing the Finance Minister, and the French Ambassador presided over this special event. More than 35O participants, including representatives from local authorities, banking institutions and development organizations, attended the event ...
We will lift burdens on SMEs'
February, 09 2007
South Africa - South African President Thabo Mbeki has again pledged that the government will reduce the regulatory burden on small, medium and micro-enterprises ...
Bank to promote small industries
February, 09 2007
Calcutta, India - Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) has decided to set-up entreprenuership development centres in rural belts across the state. ...
Microfinance to support housing program for informal dwellers
February, 08 2007
Philippines - Microfinance will play a role in capturing the informal sector market in the housing industry, state-run Home Guaranty Corp. (HGC) President Gonzalo Benjamin A. Bongolan said last week. ...
MF insights
February, 07 2007
united States - Role Reversal Are Public Development Institutions Crowding Out Private Investment in Microfinance ...
$2m grant from Japan-financed fund: ADB micro-finance project for poor
February, 07 2007
Islamabad, Pakistan - A two million dollars grant from the Asian Development Bank’s Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR), financed by the government of Japan, will test ways to expand the micro-finance outreach and services to the poor in Pakistan ...
US-based Microfinance Network Women's World Banking and Mexican Grupo Financiero Banorte Host Rural Microfinance Workshop in Mexico Feb 21-23
February, 07 2007
Mexico - Women’s World Banking (WWB), a global microfinance network based out of New York City, will work with Mexican rural microfinance institution Grupo Financiero Banorte (Banorte) to host a two day workshop in Monterrey, Mexico starting on 21 February, 2007 ...
Canada boosts support for successful Afghan micro finance program
February, 06 2007
Ottawa, Canada - Josée Verner, Minister of International Cooperation and Minister for La Francophonie and Official Languages on Tuesday announced that Canada will allocate an additional $16 million to Afghanistan`s national microcredit program, the Microfinance Investment Support Facility for Afghanistan (MISFA) ...
RBI raises doubts on microcredit
February, 06 2007
Mumbai, India - Asks banks to adhere to customer identification. A liquidity crunch has hit several microfinance institutions (MFI) with the flow of funds “temporarily” drying up after the largest MFI lender, ICICI Bank, halted payments in early January following concerns raised by the Reserve Bank of India about adherence to customer identification norms and record-keeping in the “partnership model” of micro lending. ...
Dar's NMB to Become Farmer's Bank
February, 05 2007
Tanzania - Rabobank the Netherland's based Bank, has shown interest in transforming Tanzania's National Microfinance Bank (NMB) into a farmers bank. Rabobank-Nederland is the majority shareholder of a consortium which owns a 49% stake in the NMB bank while the government owns 51% shares ...
MicroRating International – Global rating agency for Microfinance
February, 05 2007
- M-CRIL and MicroRate– the two leading microfinance rating agencies in the world announce the creation of a global alliance called, MicroRating International [MRI]. ...
CBN registers 20 micro finance banks
February, 04 2007
Nigeria - The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has commended the phenomenal progress and achievement recorded by the Eagle Flight Micro Finance Bank Limited, Warri, Delta State. A brainchild of the Warri-based Word of Life Bible Church, the Eagle Flight Micro Finance Bank Limited was established on December 26, 2005 ...
IDB fund will finance program to consolidate private microfinance institutions in Perú
February, 02 2007
Peru - The Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) announced today the approval of $1.1 million for the consolidation of private microfinance institutions in Perú ...
Micro-Loan Schemes Need More Funding
February, 02 2007
Tajikistan - Microcredit schemes have proved a successful way of helping people out of poverty in Tajikistan, but they will require substantial additional funding if they are to help everyone in need of a small loan ...
Nobel Laureate Mohd Yunus's debt removal idea
February, 02 2007
India - The Finance Ministry is averse to capping the interest rates in the Microfinance Regulatory Bill that it proposes to introduce in the Budget session of Parliament, reports CNBC-TV18 ...
Yunus for legal cap on microfinance rates
February, 02 2007
Mumbai - One of the founding fathers of microcredit and Nobel peace laureate Mohammed Yunus is in favour of a regulatory ceiling on interest rates charged by microfinance institutions. However, Reserve Bank of India is not in favour of regulating NBFCs. ...
Azerbaijan Micro Finance Bank's loan portfolio tripled
February, 02 2007
Azerbaijan - Azerbaijan Micro Finance Bank trebled its loan portfolio to US $47.6mln at early January, 2007 ...
Yunus calls for legislation on microcredit banks
February, 01 2007
Mumbai, India - Grameen Bank founder and Nobel laureate Prof Mohammed Yunus on Thursday made a strong pitch for enactment of a special law by the Indian government for setting up of micro credit banks and its regulation. These banks, essentially to be set up by the private sector, should provide loans to the poorest of the poor at the lowest interest rates possible. ...
Digging Out
February, 01 2007
Iraq - The idea of putting people to work was largely neglected after the invasion of Iraq. Now, as debate mounts over troop withdrawals, one strategy might help fill the void ...
Zurich Financial Services Group partners with Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation to focus on Micro-insurance
February, 01 2007
Switzerland - Zurich Financial Services Group (Zurich) announced today that it has entered into a partnership with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), for a joint implementation of Zurich’s new cross-regional microinsurance initiative. The initiative’s primary aim is to expand insurance coverage to disadvantaged sectors of the population in countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America, thereby promoting basic risk management principles and helping to reduce poverty. ...
High-Level Panel Meets to Follow up on Commitments to Tackling African Poverty through Broader Sustainable Access to Microfinance and other Financial Services
February, 01 2007
New York - Madagascar chosen as location for first substantive follow-up to historic United Nations Conference on Financial Inclusion in Africa held in Dakar in June 200 ...
Bellwether gets $2.4 mn from Dutch firm
February, 01 2007
India - Bellwether Microfinance Fund (BW) has received an investment of $2.4 million from Dutch financial major, Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden NV ('FMO') ...
Microfinance struggles to regain footing after staggering blows from 2006 war
February, 01 2007
Lebanon - Lebanon's nascent microfinance industry was set back years by the summer 2006 war with Israel and continues to face a constant struggle for financing. The sector, which aims to lift people out of poverty by lending small sums, lost roughly 10 percent of its assets in the war, industry leaders told The Daily Star on Wednesday ...

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