Fewer Senegalese women using microfinance products

Jun 19, 2012

Soukeyna Ndiaye Bâ, President of the Union for Women, Development and Enterprise in Africa has highlighted the fact now women use fewer microfinance products.

Soukeyna Ndiaye Bâ, President of the Union for Women, Development and Enterprise in Africa (FDEA) has highlighted the fact women now use fewer microfinance products.

She said during a conference on June 13th that the rate of involvement of women dropped 36 percent, falling from 80 percent when this system was set up at the end of the 90s, to 44 percent today.

According to her, this phenomenon is linked to the introduction of stricter rules regarding microfinance known as the PARMEC law.

"More security and guaranties are required for the money given and money is given to those who can repay," she said, quoted by Sud Quotidien newspaper.

She added that other factors influence this situation, such as high interest rates or the strong density of microfinance institutions in urban areas, making it difficult for those living in rural areas to access microcredit.

This is why Ms Bâ asked the government to set up a guarantee fund.

In 2011, the African Development Bank (AfDB) launched in partnership with the Spanish government the Microfinance Capacity Building Fund for Africa in order to help strengthen capacity building efforts in the financial sector, particularly for women and those living in rural areas.

In a press release, the AfDB highlighted that microfinance in Africa has proven to be a powerful tool to promote inclusive economic growth and generate employment.

The fund offers a technical assistance, supports projects in rural areas and contributes to strengthening the sector's transparency and women's empowerment.ADNFCR-2976-ID-801387516-ADNFCR