Friday, September 15, 2006

Microcredit and women's empowerment

From a letter to the editor in The Daily Star:
The MFIs consider the women as potential borrowers as the commercial banks are unwilling to lend to women or mobilise deposits from them, as they perceive that women are unable to control the household income. The women face cultural barriers that often restrict them to home, making it difficult for them to have access to financial services. The women have more traditional role in economy and disproportionately large household obligations. Their property right is limited, which is given importance for collateral by commercial banks.

The women generally have a high sense of responsibility. They are good savers as well as good re-payers of the loan and attend the meetings regularly. Any increase in women's income benefits the household to a greater extent, as they take better care of children. No matter who uses the loan, it benefits the household.

It also facilitates the effective utilisation of the hidden economy of women.

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