New measures announced to increase rural women's access to finance

Oct 21, 2011

Africa celebrated the International Day of Rural Women on October 15th, when several measures were revealed to facilitate their access to credit.

The Minister for Family, Women and Children in the Ivory Coast Coffie Raymonde Goudou announced the creation of a bank to finance the development of women's socio-economic activities, Fraternité Matin newspaper reports.

"A bank for women is under consideration," she said, adding that the government created a Women and Development fund on June 1st.

In Senegal, Minister for Women Aïda Mbodji invited females living in rural areas to adhere to the National Union for Farmers, Growers and Shepherds to fight against discrimination in this sector, Sud Quotidien reports.

According to the UN website, the first International Day of Rural Women was established by the General Assembly in its resolution 62/136 on December 18th 2007 in order to recognise "the critical role and contribution of rural women, including indigenous women, in enhancing agricultural and rural development, improving food security and eradicating rural poverty”.

While the majority of Africa's population live in rural areas, the supply of financial services to the sector only represents, on average, five percent of domestic resources being allocated to the agricultural sector.