Citi Gives New Funds to Microfinance Group
Thursday, September 8, 2011
Citi has committed new funding for the Banking with the Poor Network (BWTP), the only pan-Asia microfinance network, as part of its continued commitment to promoting financial inclusion globally.
Citi Foundation grants worth USD200,000 will enable the BWTP Network to provide secretariat services to the APEC Business Advisory Council’s Advisory Group on Financial Inclusion and also build its capacity to support BWTP members consisting of microfinance institutions, commercial banks, central banks and microfinance networks from 12 countries across the region.
Speaking at the Asia-Pacific Financial Inclusion Forum in Tokyo, Japan, Bob Annibale, global director of Citi microfinance and community development, said: “BWTP has been a valued regional microfinance partner for Citi since 2005, and we are pleased to be continuing our support to progress the financial inclusion agenda and bring financial services within the reach of the many underserved and unbanked people in Asia-Pacific.”
Erlijn Sie, general manager of the BWTP Network, chaired a session on remittances and cross-border microfinance at the Forum, and stressed the importance of Citi’s ongoing support to their work: “Millions of people in this region are working abroad and their remittances are vital to many economies, yet they are still excluded from the formal financial system. BWTP plans to draw greater attention to this issue by facilitating dialogue between financial institutions and regulators, and this is just one example of many valuable initiatives that we are able to undertake thanks to Citi.”
Previous Citi Foundation support for BWTP totaling over USD2 million includes lead sponsorship of the Asia Microfinance Forums, the development of microfinance and disaster management training materials, and the Citi Network Strengthening Programme.
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