The case for financial inclusion
According to a 2018 study, giving women better access to financial products and services could unlock $330 billion in annual global revenue. According to the World Economic Forum, almost 80% of women-owned small businesses are unable to access the credit that they need - a staggering US$1.7 trillion financing gap.
Financial exclusion and gender injustice inhibits growth in developing markets and limits the productivity and profitability of marginalised groups, including women, in their roles as workers, farmers, entrepreneurs and consumers. Increasing women’s financial inclusion has the potential to realise both gender equality goals as well as tapping into economic gains.
We understand the challenges facing the finance and banking sector, including:
- Gender equality and diversity remains low within the finance industry overall. Gender policies need to go further to pave the way for greater participation of women across the sector.
- Reputation risks and reporting requirements are increasing, pressuring business to impact against gender equality and diversity, net zero, sustainability, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metrics and the Sustainable Development Goals.
- Deeply embedded lack of trust in financial institutions inhibits growth of the last-mile customer in many emerging and developing markets.
- Credit risks remain high amongst low-income customers, and make affordable micro-loans viable.
- Low digital literacy remains a barrier to financial inclusion, particularly for the most marginalised women, who risk further exclusion as digital banking grows.
- Climate mitigation and health crises present an increased risk to equality, sustainability and investment portfolios.
Why work with Business with CARE?
- A recognised leader and innovator in designing and delivering programmes to promote women’s financial inclusion.
- We can reach hard to reach markets. We have pioneered and built a Village Savings Loans Associations network of 14.7m people in 62 countries, saving and lending to build better futures. Our model has been replicated and rolled out by private sector and non-profit organisations globally.
- We’re innovators, investing in, creating and testing new financial technologies and platforms to make a meaningful difference in the lives of the most vulnerable.
- We tackle the root causes of the economic exclusion of women, by addressing deeply entrenched social norms. We engage men and boys to shift power dynamics, and work with local governments and business associations to create more supportive enabling environments.