With the recent increase in food prices and resulting implications for food security, the urgency of increasing investment is now recognized as are the opportunities for profitable investment.

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resource title type year resource
Promoting Women and Youth Financial Inclusion for Entrepreneurship and Job Creation Brief 2020 English (en)

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This resource appears in: Business Support, Business planning, Staff development, Gender, Investment, Private-public partnerships

Guinea, a country of roughly 12.4 million people with a bank account penetration rate of 15 percent as of 2017, has made modest gains in reducing financial exclusion levels since 2011, despite being hit by the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD). A disproportionate number of the unbanked are women, youth and rural dwellers and an eight percent account ownership gap between men and women remains. The Global Findex also indicates that only 13.0 percent of the youth have an account at a formal financial institution, compared with 14.6 percent for the entire population. Emerging research indicates that the failure to close the gender and youth gap in access to finance represents a massive loss of output and potential – especially for the youth: it undermines their lifetime productivity and earnings potential, making it difficult for them to escape poverty.

Under a grant from the International Development Research Center (IDRC) of Canada, the African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) – an economic policy institute headquartered in Accra, Ghana – partnered with Ayani B.V., a consultancy firm in Guinea, to assess the effectiveness of financial sector initiatives in advancing women’s and youth’s financial inclusion.

The study’s emphasis was to diagnose the state of financial inclusion of adult women and youth in Guinea, gauge the impact of different approaches, and draw lessons for policy makers, regulators and service providers to enhance entrepreneurship and job opportunities for women and youth.

Following the African Union definition, this study defined youth as individuals aged between 15 and 35. An analytical framework (based on the Alliance for Financial Inclusion’s definitive framework) helped assess financial inclusion among women and youth using four indicators (Access, Usage, Quality, and Welfare improvements). The data collection phase involved a survey and focus group discussions (FGDs) among Guinean women, female and male youth in both rural and urban settings. The study engaged experts from government ministries, regulatory bodies and private sector banks, microfinance and other non-bank financial institutions along with mobile network operators (MNOs) and mobile money services. 

Document  -  English (en)

Publisher The African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET)
Number of Pages 44
Primary Language English (en)
Region / Country Global
Keywords Women and Youth, Financial Inclusion
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The International Finance Corporation’s Blended Finance Operations : Findings from a Cluster of Project Performance Assessment Reports Report 2020

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This resource appears in: Investment

This evaluation provides lessons that could inform IFC’s approach to the deployment of the blended finance instrument. Blended finance is a risk mitigation tool for investments that find it difficult to attract commercial funding. Blended finance refers to the combination of concessional and commercial funding in private sector-led projects. Its rationale is to support projects with potentially high social benefits, but that would not attract funding on strictly commercial terms due to their high risks. This note synthesizes evaluation findings from two sources:

(i) IFC’s early experience with blended finance as reflected in 14 project evaluations of projects approved over 2010-2014; and

(ii) a cluster of five Project Performance Assessment Reports (PPARs) of recent projects, approved over 2012-2016. The emphasis is on findings from the more recent projects.

The Agri-Business Capital Fund (ABC Fund) Brief 2020

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This resource appears in: Investment, Agricultural investment

The Agri-Business Capital Fund (ABC Fund) invests in smallholder farmers and rural small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries to support sustainable and inclusive agricultural value chains.

The ultimate aim is to help reduce rural poverty, feed the planet and build food systems resilient to climate change.

Publisher IFAD
Number of Pages 4
Primary Language English (en)
Region / Country Global
Keywords smallholder farmers, SMEs, Impact Investment fund
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Use of financial diaries to understand smallholder investment finance - a cross country analysis in Mozambique, Tanzania and Pakistan Paper 2019

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This resource appears in: Agricultural finance, Country studies, Africa, Asia and Pacific, Investment, Agricultural investment, Rural Invest

Purpose: This paper evaluates the relative importance of different sources of finance for agricultural and non-agricultural investments using unique Smallholder Financial Diaries collected by CGAP in Mozambique, Pakistan, and Tanzania at the individual and household level.

Design/methodology/approach: Following the analytical framework of variance decomposition developed in Samphantharak and Townsend (2010), this study develops a method to quantify how much each cash deficit associated to investments and expenses of interest co-move with different financing sources. 

Findings: This paper finds that self-finance, rather than formal or informal finance from external providers, is the main financing source for long-term and short -term smallholder agricultural investments. Further, the paper finds that the main source of self-finance varies depending on the economic opportunities faced by smallholders, with non-agricultural income as the dominant financing source for some, while agricultural income dominating for others.

Practical implications: These findings imply that financial inclusion policies specifically targeting smallholders and the agricultural sector would benefit from enabling the development of an ecosystem of diverse financial services that respond simultaneously to both agriculture and nonagriculture needs.

Originality/values: This paper furthers our knowledge on how smallholder households are financing their agricultural investments. Moreover, it develops a new methodology and uses it exploiting a unique data set.


Author María del Puerto Soria, Emilio Hernández and Riccardo Ciacci
Publisher Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy; Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), Washington D.C, United States of America; Universidad Loyola Andalucía, Seville, Spain
Number of Pages 29 pages
Primary Language English (en)
Region / Country Global, Africa, Asia
Mozambique, Tanzania and Pakistan
Keywords smallholder investment finance, financial diaries, agricultural investments, non-agricultural investments, smallholders
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The Toolkit for Understanding Diaspora Investment Toolkit 2019

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This resource appears in: Investment, Investment: General

This Toolkit has been designed for African governments to assess the viability of the diaspora investing financially back home and to determine the best approach for attracting this investment. The Toolkit provides a systematic guide for governments to work through, where the findings and recommendations will form the basis for robust diaspora investment strategies and shed light on what development finance institutions (DFIs), multilateral and bi-lateral agencies can do to support them. It is logical and straightforward in its approach, and available to non-financial experts.

The Toolkit is comprised of:

A- Handbook – Where activities should be worked through chronologically and systematically. 

B- The Diaspora Investment Assessment Template (Available upon request)

Report of the Expert Workshop on Guidelines for Micro-finance, Credit and Insurance for Small-scale Fisheries in Asia Report 2019 English (en)

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This resource appears in: Credit unions, Insurance, Microfinance institutions, Agricultural insurance, Asia and Pacific, Investment

The Expert Workshop on Guidelines for Micro-finance, Credit and Insurance for Small-scale Fisheries in Asia was held in Bangkok, Thailand in the period 7-9 May 2019. Rural finance, insurance and fisheries experts from Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines, Thailand, UK, Canada and the USA met to discuss ways to improve the access to financial services for small-scale fishers in Asia. The workshop aimed to discuss successful finance and insurance programmes in Asia for small-scale fishers, finalize practical guidelines in support of better access to financial services, and design a capacity building programme for increasing the provision of finance and insurance services to small-scale fisheries. The workshop was attended by 32 experts and was organized by the Asia-Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (APRACA) in close collaboration with FAO. The insurance and credit guidelines prepared will facilitate the implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Poverty Eradication and Food Security (SSF Guidelines), as well as contribute towards achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 14. Access to finance and insurance services will enable the small-scale fishers to invest in more responsible fishing operations and technologies, reduce overfishing, contribute to fisheries management and implement climate change adaptation measures. The micro-finance, credit and insurance guidelines for small-scale fisheries have been endorsed by APRACA members in June 2019, and implementation throughout the Asian region is promoted.

Guideline and Technical Paper  -  English (en)

Author Raymon van Anrooy
Publisher FAO
Number of Pages 41 pages
Primary Language English (en)
Region / Country Global
Keywords Micro-finance, credit, Agricultural Insurance, small-scale fisheries, Investment
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Guidebook for mobilizing inclusive remittances for rural investment Guideline 2018

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This resource appears in: Rural Financial Services, Remittances and payments, Investment, Investment: General

This Guidebook compiles the lessons learned from the implementation of the IFAD-funded Remittances and Diaspora Investment for Rural Development (2014-2018). Its purpose is to provide financial service providers, government agencies, and other stakeholders in migration and rural development with an in-depth understanding of the potential in inclusive remittances, the steps required to launch an inclusive remittances business line, the estimated costs, and the expected financial and social benefits of this emerging business opportunity.

It also serves as a programme document, outlining the implementation process and the results achieved.

Publisher IFAD
Number of Pages 52 pages
Primary Language English (en)
Region / Country Global
Keywords inclusive remittances, rural investment
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