KARACHI: Microfinance banks have emerged as key players in enhancing the process of financial inclusion in Pakistan; however, the lack of funding resources, capacity-building and product innovation remains the major challenges for the microfinance banking industry, said experts.
By Mirza Hassan
Lahore: The Canadian High Commissioner Mr. Greg Giokas lauded the pivotal role of Kashf Foundation on his visit in Lahore Head Office on Thusrday.
During visit the Commissioner praised the foundation as it was helping low-income households, particularly women, to expand their businesses through capital support and training and development opportunities.
"...Coca-Cola Beverages Pakistan Ltd (CCBPL) under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will provide KASHF Foundation a grant of Rs 2.5 million to support its Women Entrepreneurship Programme.
"...Nasir Mumtaz, assistant manager of the gender empowerment and social advocacy programme at the Kashf Foundation, welcomed the Punjab government initiative. He said the government should add more buses to the transport network and encourage the private sector participation in the sector. He said the government should also train female drivers for the service..."
Microfinance as an industry is still quite young, and when it comes to addressing institutional support for gender diversity, the efforts are nascent. Much has been learned—both about what has worked and what has failed—in the corporate world about engaging women professionals. The question is how well the microfinance industry can we take advantage of these inroads, these tested efforts and do even better at building inclusive institutions?