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A new microfinance federation to organize the sector very active with women


The Lebanon Investment in Microfinance (LIM) programme, funded by the USAID, organized yesterday a conference to launch a new microfinance federation that will bring together civil organizations and financial institutions under one umbrella so as to minimize cross-lending practices in this sector. The new association will include the Association for the Development of Rural communities, Association d’Entraide Professionelle, the Lebanese Association for Development (Al-Majmoua), the Lebanese Cooperative for Development, Entrepreneurial Development Foundation, Emkan Finance, IBDAA, Makhzoumi Foundation, and VITAS, which was formerly known as Ameen.
The executive director and head of the Banking Department at the Central Bank, Najib Shucair, noted in his keynote speech, that to date, the LIM program has awarded USD 8,299,501 in grants to Lebanese microfinance institutions, which in turn have disbursed a total value of USD 27,489,313 in the form of 12,101 micro loans, of which about 5,424 loans were destined to women borrowers. Shucair explained that as a result, the program had an impact on 18,989 jobs while helping to create 2,887 new employments, of which 45 percent were for women. In closing, Shucair underscored that 22 percent of the total microfinance clients, which reached have now 30,146 clients, have secured more than one loan, hence the idea to launch the above-mentioned Federation to pool the clients’ credit history in order to build a stronger sector and to improve the access of rural communities to finance.

Source: The Daily Star 23 October 2014

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