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November 13th, 2019

Reach, benefit and empower women with financial services

Published by NpM, Platform for Inclusive Finance,

This paper (PDF) by NpM analyzed three cases on women’s access to financial services in agriculture, in three different countries. Women always played a key role in agricultural production, however currently women do not have the same access to financial services, as well as agricultural extension and business development services, as men. Appropriate access to finance will allow the women to accelerate agricultural growth. Examples of ways to increase the number of female clients are to provide financial services close to home, to use a network of (female) fieldworkers, to link saving and lending groups, and to create women groups. For women to benefit from the loans, these must be large enough to cover all costs of the agricultural season. Women also benefit more if additional services are provided to develop their businesses, alongside with the loan. The cases showed that women are empowered by access to financial services. The paper finishes with a number of recommendations for the inclusive finance sector, which include: 1) Develop a focus on female clients, starting by a proper market analysis. 2) Adjust product design to ovecome barriers for women to reach more female clients. 3) Use communication channels that women are familiar with. 4) Develop strategies not only on the supply side but also on the capacities of female customers to use the financial service. 5) Involving men at different levels is very important in order to contribute to women’s economic empowerment. 6) Collect and analyse gender-segregated data. 7) Monitor how women are reached by, benefit from and are empowered by the financial service

Curated from inclusivefinanceplatform.nl