17th Microcredit Summit to be held in Mexico in partnership with PRONAFIM
Summary: The 17th Microcredit Summit (September 3-5, 2014 in Merida, Mexico) will assemble high-level government officials, practitioners and their partners, multinational corporations, and others from around the world to discuss the "next generation" of microfinance. The conference is organized by the Microcredit Summit Campaign and Mexico's Ministry of Economy, through the National Microenterprise Financing Program (PRONAFIM).
WASHINGTON, DC [APRIL 23] – The Microcredit Summit Campaign and Mexico's Ministry of Economy, through the National Microenterprise Financing Program (PRONAFIM), announced today that the 17th Microcredit Summit will be held September 3-5, 2014, in Merida, Mexico. This year's Summit will be organized around the theme "Generation Next: Innovations in Microfinance," engaging delegates in a thoughtful discussion around the challenges and opportunities associated with the growth and transformation of the sector, especially through innovative and best practices that accelerate the steps to reach full financial inclusion.
At last year’s Summit in the Philippines, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said, "The many organizations involved in the Microcredit Summit Campaign and the 100 Million Project are making important contributions to [the World Bank’s 2030] goals...We need to increase citizens’ access to financial services to help us reach our goals. This is why we are committed to reaching the 2.5 billion adults who currently are financially excluded." (See full remarks at right.)
"In organizing the 17th Microcredit Summit around the theme of 'Generation Next,'" said Microcredit Summit Campaign Director Larry Reed, "we are trying to answer the question of how to better serve the next generation of clients and promote client-centered microfinance. How do we adopt and utilize the next generation of technological innovations? How do we cultivate the next generation of microfinance leaders? And, how do we set up regulatory frameworks to promote innovations and cultivate transparency?"
Microfinance is just one strategy among many in the fight to end extreme poverty, and in recent years, Latin America has proven to be a leader in piloting the "next generation" of interventions—from government safety net programs like conditional cash transfers (CCTs) to increased regulatory space for non-banks and mobile banking providers. Mexico, in particular, has made great strides through their financial inclusion national strategy.
"In Mexico it is clear that first priorities for the sector are to elevate social impact, professionalize the financial intermediaries, reduce concentration within the sector and promote the development of innovative processes in microfinance," shared Elenitza Canavati, general coordinator of PRONAFIM. "This strengthens a stable, professional, and socially-oriented microfinance system—one that provides incentives to bring financial services to unbanked areas under a regional, intercultural, and gender equality approach."
The current financial reforms have imprinted a more social role in the attributions of the authorities that regulate the sector, such as the CONDUSEF (National Commission for the Protection and Defense of the Users of Financial Services), since they place the end user of financial services at the center by creating consumer protection tools such as the Bureau of Financial Institutions. Further, the reforms are expected to trigger important advances in financial inclusion that will permit more and cheaper loans to MFIs and will allow them to operate through correspondents and mobile banking devices, two tools that make it easier to reach rural areas, which is where the population most commonly excluded from the financial system is found.
As part of the strategy "Crusade against Hunger," PRONAFIM will focus in 2014 on facilitating microcredit loans to support entrepreneurial activities in 1,012 municipalities in which there are major improvement opportunities. PRONAFIM intends to reach another million people during the year.
The 17th Microcredit Summit will serve as a platform for the "next generation" of microfinance and will guide the sector to look forward in the financial inclusion movement and continue improving the life of the clients.
The Microcredit Summit Campaign (the “Campaign”), a project of RESULTS Educational Fund, is the largest global network of institutions and individuals involved in microfinance and is committed to two important goals: 1) reaching 175 million of the world’s poorest families with microfinance and 2) helping 100 million families lift themselves out of extreme poverty. The Campaign convenes a broad array of actors involved with microfinance to promote best practices in the field, to stimulate the exchange of knowledge and to work towards alleviating world poverty through microfinance.
PRONAFIM (the National Program for Financing Microentrepreneurs) is a government program under the Ministry of Economy of the federal government of Mexico, established in 2001. Its main objective is to support men and women with productive projects and entrepreneurial aptitudes who currently lack access to traditional banking and related services. This is achieved through a network of financial institutions, to which PRONAFIM grants credit lines in order for them to provide microcredits to the target population.
PRONAFIM’s vision is to develop a stable and professional system of microfinance institutions that provide qualified and suitable microfinance services to individuals and groups, along with proper financial education, to ensure the use of microcredit as an instrument for welfare improvement. www.pronafim.gob.mx