Oct 6, 2014

The GIZ Regional Programme “Promotion of the Microfinance Sector in the MENA Region” (MFMR) hosted its third annual strategic planning workshop with its counterparts from Jordan, Egypt and Palestine on September 15 and 16, 2014 in Amman. The event was attended by delegates from the Central Bank of Jordan, Tanmeyah Network, the Palestine Monetary Authority, the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority, the Regional Network Sanabel and the Alliance for Financial Inclusion.

The first day of the workshop aimed at exchanging knowledge and lessons learned among peers through discussions of each country’s achievements since 2013. Mr. Johannes Majewski, the MFMR Programme Coordinator, commended the progress of the framework conditions of the microfinance sector in the participating countries. What is the role of regulators in promoting the sector in sound governance? To which extend can self-regulation be a useful tool in supervising the market? Why tiered approach is important for allowing a diversity of financial service providers to serve MF clients? And some other questions were opened for discussion and examination among the participants.

On the second day of the workshop, the participants revisited planning and strategic topics. At first, they developed a capacity development strategy for supervising the microfinance sector for each country and defined indicators for its success measurement. Next, the representatives developed the operational plans for the upcoming 18 months of cooperation. Last but not least, the participants examined the prospect of conducting joint regional activities, whereby the vast majority of participants expressed their favour of conducting joint capacity development activities and make maximum profit of experience sharing in the MENA region.

Mr. Majewski took the opportunity of this regional meeting to introduce his successor; Mr. Hayder Al Bagdadi. Delegates and MFMR team members thanked Mr. Majewski for his dedicated efforts to fulfill the objectives of the MFMR Programme over the past 3 years. They also welcomed Mr. Al Bagdadi and looked forward to a fruitful cooperation in the future. The GIZ MFMR Regional Programme is implemented on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

By Rania Abu Rabie