Microfinance to look at harnessing professionalism

Microfinance to look at harnessing professionalism

As the  microfinance day closes  in,  professionalism  is  the  main focus  in a bid to  bolster  the sector  needed to boost  the  financial  access mainly by rural folks. Peter  Rwema, acting   executive secretary   of  Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda-AMIR  believes says that   day will help  in   highlighting the performance  of the sector in terms of professionalism  as well  as  best  practices to  ease  service delivery. “This is the time we  access  ourselves  on  how  far we have gone  in promoting  inclusive  c micro finance based on  best practices,”  he said The day Running  under the theme; Promoting inclusive micro- FINANCE with professionalism in Rwanda” is slated for   7th May   will  up  the sector’s  professionalism…

Nyamasheke: Extend banking to rural areas, banks told

Nyamasheke: Extend banking to rural areas, banks told

Charles Bahizi, vice mayor for economic affairs in Nyamasheke district has urged financial institutions to extend their services to all Ghanaians, especially those in the rural areas. This was revealed on April 10, during the access to finance forum meeting to discuss on reasons behind residents low turn up to work with financial institutions. That, he said, would be one of the surest ways to promote growth and reduce poverty in the country. It’s in this regard that it was decided during the meeting that an open day be organized that financial services are showcase their services to residents. Vice-mayor Bahizi reminded financial institutions that good customer care is what makes a customer king and…

Experts root for competitiveness in microfinance Institutions

Experts root for competitiveness in microfinance Institutions

Experts’ believe thatincreased competiveness within the microfinanceInstitutions-MFIs will improve the   sector’s abilityto bank the rural folks, thus increase   financial inclusion. Rita Ngarambe, Executive Director, AMIR consult Ltd says that   helping MFIs  sector to boost its competitiveness and provide customer orientedproductsthat will result into a strong   and vibrant sector that is able to finance rural   growth. “Competition should pave way for better services and increased access to financial    services by people mainly those in rural areas,” she noted Ngarambe believes that    when    microfinance institutions look at   embracing competition and   become innovative to bring out   customer centered services, access to finance by the unbanked population   will be easier. The MFIs   that  are in  microfinance sector   also composed …

Eco Bank records Rwf518.4m profit

Eco Bank records Rwf518.4m profit

Eco bank Rwanda that was recently on spotlight for closure of some branches in the busy areas of Kigali city after hitting a record loss in 2013 has reported a Rwf 518.4 percent   profit after tax for the year 2014. The   Bank in a bid to stem off high expenditures that were accrued from operational inefficiency and optimizing  operations  that mainly  pushed the  bank into  a Rwf563.1 million loss in 2013,closed   branches in the  busy areas of  Kimironko, Remera and Nyabugogo in Kigali  city. The closure  led to suspicions  that the bank    may  likely be winding up its operations  in Rwanda after  failing to penetrate the rural  market  that  is  composed of  organized  credit savings-Saccos…

Credit to private sector now at over 19% growth

Credit to private sector now at over 19% growth

Central bank announced that credit to   private sector increased by 19.2 percent in February 2015 compared to 13.1 percent in the same period in 2014. The growth according to experts   paints a healthy outlook for the economy that grew by 7 percent by end of December 2014 after a slow down recorded in the same period in 2013. The Bank’s statistics indicate that   new   authorized loans grew by 3.3 percent in February 2015, providing the   financial sector stance   to continue performing positively to   finance   the   economy. The increase   in credit to private sector is   attributed to  the   positive  growth of  both the  banking and  microfinance sectors   since December  2014 which registered  better  asset quality  indicators…

MFIs high interest rates scaring away borrowers

  Borrowers say the high interest rates on   loans in the microfinance Institutions-MFIs hinder access to credit, despite the common perception that the sector increases access to finance. Complains are; an interest rate that goes up to 22 percent on a loan is too high considering the type of businesses they   operate which at times take long for the owner to start enjoying profits. “You see when the MFIs add high interest it is hard for us to make profit  to pay  back  the  loan and also keep  surviving,”  said Damascene Nkurikiryayo, a  retail  shop  owner  in  Ndera  sector, Gasabo District. With the banks  requirements   not bale to accommodate  borrowers  for  small  loans, microfinance institutions…

Insurance needs more flexible products

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More players seem to join the insurance sector every day, a surprise for a sector that only enjoys a 2 percent penetration in the country. With four new players expected to set up shop in the country this year according to the National Bank of Rwanda (BNR), the stiff competition in the sector will require companies to avail innovative products to the consumers. As of now they are 11 insurance operators in the country all gunning to expand their consumer base while setting the trend as market leaders. With health insurance being mandatory by law, arrival of new products will align the difference between the firms as they all seek to expand their customer base…

Parliament passes revised National Budget

Parliament passes revised National Budget

The parliament   has approved the revised National budget for the fiscal year 2014/2015 that was tabled by finance Minister, Amb. Claver Gatete   last   month. The  budget  adjustment catered for an increase of  Rwf 6.4 billion pushing the  budget to Rwf 1759.6 billion from Rwf 1753.3  that  initially approved by parliament  in July 2014 to  further boost  implementation of  the outlined  projects under the country’s  second development strategy. “The approved financing adjustments will ensure implementation of the second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS2) stays on track,” a statement from the Ministry read in part. However, the   approval came with a slight adjustment that saw an increase of Rwf 2.7 billion from the earlier prosed…

Commerce, hospitality sector most financed sectors

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The commerce, restaurants and hotels were the most financed sectors in terms of access to credit by private sector from commercial banks in 2014. According to Central bank statistics, out of the total new authorized loans form commercial banks, commerce, restaurants and hotels took 41.6% of the total loans, a proportion that indicates the growth within the services sector. This saw total loans disbursed to private sector increasing by 38.2 percent to Rwf 652.9 billion in 2014 from Rwf 472.5 billion in the same period in 2013. “There is an improvement on the side of Banks on financing businesses mainly in these areas and we will as Central Bank continue to support banks to extend…

Bad loans now threaten microfinance sector

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The rapid growth of savings and credit co-operative societies without matching capacity to manage loans is partly responsible for the increasing bad loans. Latest statists from to national bank of Rwanda registered an increase its bad   loans from 6.8 percent recorded in 2013 to 7 percent by end of December 2014. “The capacity of loan officers to analyze loan applications and also ensure the monitoring after disbursement is still low,” Jessica Massi, a financial consultant said. Moreover, the lack of knowledge on the side of borrowers also contributes yet another threat to reducing bad loans. “We are carrying out a scientific research on the causes of bad loans which is becoming a prime threat to…