US-based nonprofit MFTransparency and the 24-member Association of MicroFinance Institutions of Zambia (AMIZ) will co-host a workshop in Lusaka, Zambia, on June 6, 2011, effectively launching the Transparent Pricing Initiative in Zambia, the goal of which is to publish comparable cost data on microfinance products to help poor people make informed decisions when borrowing.
Under the headship of MFTransparency, the workshop will provide training on pricing transparency to local industry stakeholders including staff of microfinance institutions, regulators and funders. This initiative is the sixth country project in the Enabling Africa to Price Responsibly & Educate on Interest Rates program (APR & EIR Program). Established in May 2010, the project aims to improve consumer protection by increasing awareness of transparent pricing concerns. To date, MFTransparency has released data from 22 countries in Asia, Africa, Eastern Europe and Latin America.
By Hajar Elaalej, Research Associate
About MFTransparency: MFTransparency is a US-based nongovernmental organization (NGO) that was launched in July 2008 to provide information on microcredit products and their prices. MFTransparency collects data on the interest and fees charged on microfinance loan products in order to calculate the effective interest rates on those loans. Its intention is to establish the industry standard for pricing disclosure and to facilitate a fair exchange of microfinance products between suppliers and consumers.
About the Association of MicroFinance Institutions of Zambia (AMIZ): The Association of MicroFinance Institutions of Zambia (AMIZ) consists of 24 local microfinance organizations that work towards the betterment of the microfinance sector in Zambia. As of March 21, 2011, AMIZ represents approximately 1 million clients accounting for a reported 90 percent of the population receiving microloans in the country.
Source and Additional Resources:
MFTransparency Press Release, May 31, 2011, “MFTransparency and the Association of MicroFinance Institutions of Zambia to Launch the Transparent Pricing Initiative in Zambia”, http://www.mftransparency.org/pages/2011/05/31/mftransparency-and-the-association-of-microfinance-institutions-of-zambia-to-launch-the-transparent-pricing-initiative-in-zambia/
MicroCapital.org Brief, May 29, 2011, “MFTransparency Launches Microfinance Transparent Pricing Initiative in Guinea Bissau, Tanzania”, http://www.microcapital.org/microcapital-brief-mftransparency-launches-m…
MicroCapital.org Brief, May 29, 2011, “MFTransparency Launches Microfinance Transparent Pricing Initiative in Guinea Bissau, Tanzania”, http://www.microcapital.org/microcapital-brief-mftransparency-launches-microfinance-transparent-pricing-initiative-in-guinea-bissau-tanzania/
MicroCapital Universe Profile: MFTransparency, http://www.microcapital.org/microfinanceuniverse/tiki-index.php?page=MFT…
MicroCapital Universe Profile: Association of MicroFinance Institutions of Zambia, http://www.microcapital.org/microfinanceuniverse/tikiindex.php?page=Association+of+MicroFinance+Institutions+of+Zambia+%28AMIZ%29
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