Solidarity Microfinance, working in the field of financing micro-projects by women, signed a financing agreement worth EGP 90m with Al Baraka Bank Egypt, in order to support women who own micro-enterprises nationwide.
According to the agreement, the funding will provide women with limited income with sufficient financial resources that enable them to develop and expand their already existing projects, thus contributing to providing sufficient income for their families, to improve their lives.
This comes within the framework of Al Baraka Bank and Solidarity Microfinance Foundation’s strategy to support women in various fields, and in line with Egypt’s Vision 2030 to empower women and provide growth opportunities for medium, small and micro enterprises, thus contributing to supporting the Egyptian economy and creating new job opportunities.
The cooperation agreement between the two sides reinforces the plan and directions of the Central Bank of Egypt and the Financial Regulatory Authority towards expanding the umbrella of financial inclusion and providing financing needs for owners of microenterprises to develop the scope of their businesses.
Hazem Hegazy, CEO and Vice Chairperson of Al Baraka Bank Egypt, said: “In light of global conditions, medium, small and micro enterprises need to have financing opportunities that are appropriate to their financial conditions, in order to achieve real growth in their business. We realize that financing these projects is a key factor in achieving Comprehensive development, which enhances growth opportunities for all economic and productive sectors.”
He added: “The strategy of Al Baraka Bank is very keen on developing the role of women economically and socially, in light of the state’s tendencies to achieve equality, and we focus through our banking services and partnerships on achieving a positive impact for Egyptian women, as we seek through this cooperation to give clients of microenterprises an opportunity for obtaining financing to expand the size of their businesses, without much difficulty, which contributes to achieving financial inclusion by including them in the formal economy system, and establishing new projects in the market.”
Ahmed Suleiman, head of the bank’s small and medium enterprises sector, added: “This agreement comes within the bank’s plans to attract new segments of customers who are not covered, by being present through centers dedicated to serving them. The bank’s portfolio for financing medium, small and micro projects will reach EGP 4.5bn by the end of 2022.”
Mona Zulfiqar, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Solidarity Microfinance Foundation, said that the Foundation will redirect these funds to support women microenterprise owners, in order to enhance the role of the sector, which is a strong supporter of economic activity on a large scale.
Zulfiqar indicated that the institution, as one of the leading entities in financing microenterprises, provides distinct financing mechanisms that meet all financing needs, as well as non-financial solutions and services for women who own innovative projects and ideas, which contributes to supporting the state’s approach towards encouraging local production to limit imports.
Reham Farouk, CEO of Solidarity Microfinance Foundation, said: “The financing amounting to EGP 90m will support the institution’s long-established directions and strategy, which focuses on providing easy financing for women, and reaching all groups that face difficulty in providing the necessary financing for the expansion and development of projects, by offering a package of various financing programs, which include individual financing, group financing, family financing, gold and complementary financing products.”
She emphasized that the Solidarity Microfinance Foundation has a strong credit history that enables it to communicate with various banks, whether governmental or private, as the existing portfolio of financing for solidarity female clients recorded about EGP 1bn in September 2022.