Category: South Asia, East Asia and Pacific

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Reports 198 Banks Have Lent $165m to 964k Borrowers in the Philippines

According to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) the central bank of the Philippines, 198 banks in the Philippines have lent PHP 7.15 billion (USD 165 million) to 963,717 microborrowers during the year ending June 2011. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Indian Health Insurer Swayam Shikshan Prayog (SSP) Boosts Client Retention With Discounted Outpatient Services, Also to Launch Cashless Health Delivery With Swasth India

Swayam Shikshan Prayog (SSP), an education and development organization based in Mumbai, India, has found that offering discounted outpatient services to health insurance clients is linked with customer retention. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: “SPM in Microfinance 24*7 Helpline” Offers Advice to Front-Line Workers Regarding Social Performance Management

Founded in 2011 in India, “SPM in Microfinance 24*7 Helpline” is an online resource that aims to help institutions and individuals worldwide with issues related to social performance management (SPM) in microfinance [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Cambodian Government: Microfinance Interest Rates of Up to 50 Percent Threaten Loss of Land, “Social Instability”

Cambodian government officials reportedly are looking to negotiate down the interest rates on microfinance loans, arguing that current rates are unsustainable for the country’s rural farming population and that defaults are causing many farmers to become landless. [1] Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Cambodia Institute of Development Study Indicates Microfinance Borrowers Better Off Than Non-Borrowers

The Cambodia Institute of Development Study, a non-governmental research institute based in Phnom Penh, recently released a study indicating that borrowers from microfinance institutions (MFIs) are better off in terms of income, assets and women’s empowerment than are debtors who receive loans from other sources. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Michael and Susan Dell Foundation Takes Equity Stake in India’s BASIX Sub-K Mobile Payments Platform

The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, a US-based nonprofit, has taken an equity stake in BASIX Sub-K iTransactions Limited, the mobile payments unit of BASIX Group, an Indian entity providing services to poor people including microfinance, health insurance and agricultural and business development services [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Acumen Fund Loans $1m to Indian Microfinance Institution Gramalaya Urban and Rural Development Initiatives and Network (GUARDIAN)

Acumen Fund, a US-based nonprofit fund that invests in entrepreneurial approaches to reduce poverty, has made a loan amounting to USD 1 million to Gramalaya Urban and Rural Development Initiatives and Network (GUARDIAN), an Indian microfinance institution (MFI) that focuses on lending to increase access to clean water and sanitation facilities [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Doubles Microfinance Loan Ceiling to USD 6,835, BPI Globe BanKO to Provide Micro-Agri Loans to Farmers in the Philippines

A new microfinance loan category called “microfinance plus” has been approved by the Monetary Board of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), raising the overall microloan ceiling from PHP 150,000 (USD 3,417) to PHP 300,000 (USD 6,835). Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Preferring Sector-Wide Solution, Reserve Bank of India Refuses to Classify Restructured Loans as Performing Assets for Microfinance Institutions BASIX, Sharada’s Women’s Association for Weaker Section (SWAWS)

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), India’s central banking authority, has refused to give a special exemption to commercial banks, that include HDFC Bank, Corporation Bank and Axis Bank, to restructure loans outstanding to microfinance providers BASIX Group and Sharada’s Women’s Association for Weaker Section (SWAWS) Credit Corporation India Private Limited under a classification other than as non-performing assets [1] [2]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: RCBC of the Philippines to Merge JP Laurel Bank into Rizal Microbank by April

Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), a development bank based in the Philippines, reportedly is looking to integrate the operations of its microfinance subsidiaries, President Jose Laurel Rural Bank Incorporated (JP Laurel Bank) and Rizal Microbank by April. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Indian Microfinance Institutions Allowed to Raise $10m Each in External Commercial Borrowings

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Deputy Governor Mr H R Khan has announced that Indian microfinance institutions (MFIs) will now be allowed to execute external commercial borrowings (ECB)–those that are raised from outside India–of up to USD 10 million per financial year, twice as much as was previously allowed [1]. Such funds must be “utilised for lending to self-help groups or for micro-credit or for bonafide micro finance activity including capacity building.” [2] The change is intended to address liquidity issues in the industry [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Philippine Central Bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Issues Microinsurance Licenses to Bangko Mabuhay, Mallig Plains Rural Bank

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), the Philippine central bank, has issued licenses to two rural banks, Bangko Mabuhay and Mallig Plains Rural Bank Incorporated, allowing them to provide microinsurance services [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Philippine BPI Globe BanKo Issues $45m in Wholesale Loans to Microfinance Institutions, Expands Agent Network to Boost Retail Business

BPI Globe BanKo, a mobile-based savings bank affiliated with the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), reportedly has extended PHP 2 billion (USD 45.3 million) in loans to unspecified Philippine microfinance institutions. Continue reading

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