By our Correspondent
Reports say that the Board of Directors of the African Development Fund, the concessional lending arm of the African Development Bank Group, has approved $16 million in loan and grant financing to Niger to implement the Financial Sector Deepening and Inclusion Project.
In this regard, the project will strengthen mobilization of long-term resources for financial service providers and improve financial inclusion of vulnerable populations, particularly women, youth, rural dwellers and micro, small and medium enterprises.
Quite specifically, the project will contribute to the establishment of a financing mechanism that is conducive to the needs of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises through the capitalization of the Financial Inclusion Development Fund and the strengthening of the technical and operational capacities of financial service providers, particularly the decentralized financial systems. This will enable them to develop financial products and services adapted to the needs of the population. All of this, with a view to increasing the resilience of the financial sector and reducing poverty in Niger.
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To this end, Niger’s Minister of Finance, Ahmat Jidoud said he welcomed “this support from the African Development Bank which will strengthen the technical and financial capacities of financial service providers in Niger, in particular decentralized financial systems, which will make it possible to broaden access to financial services to the greatest number of our citizens, especially those living in rural areas.”
Responding, Ahmed Attout, Head of the African Development Bank’s Capital Markets Development Division said: “We are delighted with this collaboration between the African Development Bank Group and Niger. By strengthening the capacity of the Financial Inclusion Development Fund and financial service providers, this project will help diversify the sources of financing for Nigerien small and medium-sized enterprises and increase financial inclusion in Niger.