Microfinance has really taken off in Tunisia and is beginning to play a key role in promoting the financial inclusion of the most vulnerable sectors of the population, combating poverty and creating employment.
- Enda Tamweel the pioneering Tunisian microfinance NGO is currently the biggest micro finance institution (MFI) in the country with some 260,000 – essentially female – customers spread throughout urban and rural areas. To help it deal with increasing demand, Proparco granted Enda an €8 million loan on October 26 last. These funds will enable this MFI to expand the range of loans it provides to the least well-off, especially in rural areas, in a context where many new Tunisian MFIs are focusing their lending on urban SMEs.
On 29 November at Tunisia 2020, Proparco rounded out its support by signing an agreement to provide €150,000 worth of technical assistance over a four-year period. This initiative seeks to bolster Enda's "gender" strategy of giving women greater access to micro-loans.
For more information and to view the related report, go to Enda.
- The nascent CFE (Centre Financier aux Entrepreneurs) was only created last year as a specialised MFI providing financial services to micro-businesses (i.e., between 1 and 10 employees). There is a specific focus on lending to female entrepreneurs – who continue all too frequently to be excluded from financial systems – and to young entrepreneurs. CFE helps these businesses move from the informal into the formal economy and promotes their financial inclusion by gradually making them eligible for bank loans.
On 19 October last, Proparco agreed to invest €1 million in CFE Tunisie's equity with a view to partnering its development. This operation rounds out the €1 million technical support agreement signed between AFD and CFE at Tunisia 2020 which will help this MFI both to continue to grow its business and to leverage financing over the next few years.
Tunisia 2020: €31.1 million for Tunisian private sector businesses