“What are successes, new approaches and challenges of microfinance regulations in Arab countries?” Distinguished microfinance regulators from Palestine, Morocco, Jordan, Tunisia and Egypt gathered at the Microfinance Regulator Roundtable to exchange on the state of affairs and experiences in their countries.
Microfinance regulations in Arab countries have changed in the past years and challenges have been handled with success. With further developments on the horizon, the Microfinance Regulator Roundtable, held November 5th in Amman, Jordan, allowed regulators to benefit from exchanges on relevant experiences and views. Accordingly, presentations on successful regulatory approaches as well as challenges and current threats in each represented microfinance market set the ground for a vivid discussion.
One of the conclusions drawn at the Roundtable were Credit Bureaus as a key factor to success in microfinance and considerations of a wider range of financial services offered by microfinance institutions (MFIs). Moreover, the profound discussions underlined the collective view of microfinance regulator’s role as growth enablers rather than limiting the sector.
Enriched by a presentation of international experts on “What makes a MFI a MFI?”, the concluding part of the session triggered the further discourse: Participants discussed on, for example, specific microfinance licensing cases and argued about a needed balance between social performance and sustainability of MFIs.
The Roundtable represented an ideal platform to foster dialogue and mutual learning between leading microfinance regulators in Arab countries. The noticeably energy and demand for such an exchange in this region marked the beginning of similar consultations on a regular basis.
By Sofia Bublatzky