Zimbabwe’s Microfinance Institutions Have Lost Their Way, Says Reserve Bank Governor

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Says Microfinance institutions have lost their way as they are concentrating on maximising profit and need re-orientation to ensure they focus on supporting marginalised people living in rural areas to promote financial inclusion.

RBZ Deputy Governor, Dr Charity Dhliwayo told micro-finance sector executives at the inaugural Zimbabwe Association of Micro-Finance Institutions (Zamfi) summer school in the resort town of Nyanga that micro-finance institutions (MFIs) were an integral, developmental part of the financial sector.

The two-day summer school held last weekend ran under the theme: “Re-defining micro-finance”.

According to the central bank, Zimbabwe had 155 registered MFIs with 417 branches countrywide as at the end of September 2015, with their basic role being to extend small, short term loans to consumers.

Experts, however, note that there remains a large number of MFIs which are operating informally.

“We have since noticed that overtime, MFIs have largely drifted from their original intent as profit maximisation has become the main focus,” Dr Dhliwayo said.

Source: allAfrica (link opens in a new window)

financial inclusion, microfinance