26 March 2020
© Didier Gentilhomme

Actors committed to microfinance

With almost 12 years of experience in the microfinance sector and over €200 million in funding,  the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation finances and supports with technical assistance microfinance institutions worldwide. This support aims at promoting sustainable and innovative microfinance services which, in turn, will have positive social and economic impacts for low-income populations and the development of small and micro enterprises.

With 37% of its investments in Sub-Saharan Africa, the continent is at the heart of the Foundation’s action and its mission to contribute to the fight against poverty. Alongside the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Luxembourg Government, the Foundation will strengthen its support to microfinance institutions in West Africa, within the framework of a new technical assistance programme.

Both partners of the Foundation have strong experience in the development of microfinance: the EIB has already committed over € 1.3 billion for the sector since its first microfinance operations in 1992, a key objective of EIB support for private sector investments in Africa, and Luxembourg concentrates 61% of global assets under microfinance management.

Strengthening the impact of the Foundation in West Africa

After granting in 2018 to the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation a loan equivalent to €12 million euros in CFA francs, in order to support microfinance in West Africa, the EIB allocated, on behalf of the Government of Luxembourg, a grant of € 332,000 to provide technical support to five microfinance institutions supported by the Foundation.

This two-year programme will allow the Foundation to support Caurie (Senegal), Kafo Jiginew (Mali), Graine (Burkina Faso), ACEP Burkina Faso and ACEP Niger in order to facilitate their digital transformation, improve risk management or even strengthen the social performance management. Thanks to this partnership with the EIB and the Government of Luxembourg, the Foundation is increasing its presence in West Africa and strengthening its value proposition to its partners in the region. This will strengthen the impact of microfinance in rural and urban areas of West Africa, including in the Sahel States. Moreover, consolodating private sector access to finance will be key to bolster Africa’s resilience and recovery from the expected impact of the Corona virus.