Impact of Financial Inclusion & Microfinance; New evidence

14 May, 2014

In the world today, 80% of the poor population has no access to financial services (World Bank, 2012).Financial inclusion is being promoted by various policy makers but does it benefit the poor? CGAP has published a focus note on recent evidence showing the impact of financial inclusion. This evidence has been found throught the usage of randomized control trials (RCT) or quasi-randomized impact evaluations.

The focus note concludes that the evidence shows that ‘financial inclusion is positively correlated with growth and employment’. In addition to this, the evidence suggests ‘benefits for other government and private-sector efforts that might arise from inclusive low-cost, financial systems that reach a larger number of citizens’(CGAP, 2014).

Currently also ING, together with NpM and its members, is carrying out a research on the social impact of microfinance. The purpose of this research, “A Billion to Gain?” 2014, is ‘to address the opportunities and challenges the sector currently faces, with the intention to improve contributions to the microfinance sector’ (ING, 2014). The focus of this research is on different themes namely; household finances, household enterprises, education, food and health and women empowerment. The research uses two case studies from Ghana and India. For “A Billion to Gain?” 2014 the research methodology ‘Recall’ has been used, by which interviewees are asked about their situation now in comparison to two years ago.  The outcomes of this research will be presented at the conference “A Billion to Gain?” on September 3rd , 2014.

For more information about the research go to the ING “A Billion to Gain?” 2014 website.

 

 

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