Category: Africa

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Survey: Two Thirds of Poor Insured South Africans Choose Funeral Microinsurance

A study by Ikapadata, a South Africa-based data collection company, indicates that 20 percent of South Africans with low incomes have formal health insurance while 66 percent have no formal insurance at all, excluding those who receive coverage from their employers.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD) to Guarantee Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF) Loans, Largely in Sub-Saharan Africa

The Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based nonprofit that provides financial services to microfinance institutions, recently signed a risk and technical assistance agreement with the Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD), a bi-lateral development finance institution of the French government, to further GCAMF’s microfinance efforts, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Deputy Prime Minister Mutambara of Zimbabwe Urges Banks to Stop Seeking Legal Action Against Econet’s Ecocash Mobile Banking Service and Start Competing

Zimbabwe’s Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara reportedly is urging banks in the country to “develop competing products” that will allow them to match or surpass Ecocash, the mobile banking service of South Africa-based telecommunications group Econet, instead of engaging in what he described as “fighting against technology”.  Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PAPER WRAP-UP: “Unlocking the Potential: Women and Mobile Financial Services in Emerging Markets;” published by mWomen Global Development Alliance of the Global System for Mobile Communications Association (GSMA), Visa, Bankable Frontier Associates

Published by Global System for Mobile Communications Association’s mWomen Global Development Alliance, Visa and Bankable Frontier Associates; 2013; 40 pages; available at: http://www.gsma.com/mobilefordevelopment/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/GSMA-mWomen-Visa_Unlocking-the-Potential_Feb-2013.pdf

This report analyzes connections between mobile financial services and women’s financial inclusion in the developing world. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: MasterCard Foundation Donates $4.3m to Smart Campaign for Microfinance Client Protection Effort

The MasterCard Foundation, a Canada-based institution that was founded by US-based financial services firm MasterCard Worldwide, has announced that it will donate USD 4.3 million to The Smart Campaign, a US-based consumer protection initiative targeting microfinance clients worldwide.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Uganda’s Insurance Regulator, Making Finance Work for Africa (MFW4A), Access to Insurance Initiative (A2ii) Seek to Expand Access to Microinsurance, Perhaps Mobile Money

The Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA), Uganda’s insurance industry regulator, reportedly is partnering with Making Finance Work for Africa (MFW4A), a multilateral platform that aims to coordinate financial sector activities among African governments, and the Access to Insurance Initiative (A2ii), a global program hosted by Germany’s international cooperation agency (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit), to create regulation that make access to microinsurance more efficient, mainly for low-income earners. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Central Bank of Nigeria Agrees to Extend Deadline for Smaller Microfinance Banks to Raise Capital Until December 2013

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has agreed to extend the deadline by one year for microfinance banks (MFBs) to recapitalize as needed to avoid closing branches to comply with CBN’s regulatory framework that was revised in 2011 to limit the number and locations of branches MFBs can operate based on their level of capital. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Centenary Bank, Opportunity Uganda, PostBank Partner With Uptime Solutions to Rollout Mobile Banking Vans to Rural Areas

Several financial institutions in Uganda including Centenary Bank, a Uganda-based commercial bank specializing in rural finance; Opportunity Uganda, a subsidiary of US-based nonprofit Opportunity International; and PostBank Uganda, a government-owned non-bank credit institution, reportedly have partnered with Uptime Solutions Limited, a Uganda-based for-profit company providing technology solutions for financial services and enterprise development, to deploy mobile banking vans to extend financial services to more residents, mainly in rural trading centers. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATON ROUND-UP: The Business Case for Life Microinsurance in the Philippines, MIX Map of Financial Inclusion in India, 2012 Sub-Saharan Africa Snapshot

“The Business Case for Life Microinsurance in the Philippines: Initial Findings;” by Richard Koven, Michael J. McCord, John Wipf and Emily Zimmerman; published by the MicroInsurance Centre; October 2012; 9 pages; available at:
http://www.microinsurancecentre.org/milk-project/milk-docs/doc_details/890-milk-brief-14-the-business-case-for-life-microinsurance-in-the-philippines-initial-findings.html

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MICROFINANCE PAPER WRAP-UP: “How Can Microfinance Programs Help the Struggle Against Social problems Such as Begging, Child Labor, Prostitution, Violence Against Women, Criminality, Gangs, and Drug Addiction?;” by William O. Maddocks; Commissioned by the Global Microcredit Summit

By William O. Maddocks; Commissioned by the Global Microcredit Summit; 2011; 31 pages; available at: http://www.globalmicrocreditsummit2011.org/userfiles/file/Workshop%20Papers/W_%20Maddocks%20-%20How%20Can%20Microfinance%20Programs%20Help%20the%20Struggle%20Against%20Social%20Problems%20Such.pdf

This paper presents an analysis of the role of microfinance institutions in helping to solve “seemingly intractable social problems” including begging, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS and discrimination against the disabled, all while maintaining financial sustainability. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development Grants $925,000 to Agricultural Bank of Sudan Microfinance Initiative Focusing on Women

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a United Nations agency, has provided a grant of USD 925,000 to the Republic of Sudan to be invested in the Agricultural Bank of Sudan Microfinance Initiative (ABSUMI), a creation of the government-owned Agricultural Bank of Sudan. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Silatech, American Refugee Committee (ARC), Kaah Express to Offer Microfinance in Somalia

Qatar-based Silatech, a social enterprise that seeks to promote youth entrepreneurship and employment in the Arab world, and the American Refugee Committee (ARC), a US-based nonprofit that provides humanitarian assistance in Haiti, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, are partnering with Kaah Express, a US-based for-profit money transfer company, to introduce a new microfinance program in Somalia.  Continue reading

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