In her role of a Chairwoman of the Microfinance Centre, Software Group’s COO Ms. Lucija Popovska signed a pledge, together with key players in the inclusive finance space, that aims to support the continuous operations of the microfinance institutions during the COVID-19 crisis.
The document contains a set of principles that will help the sector fight the negative economic effects of the pandemic.
Initiated by the Grameen Credit Agricole Foundation, the common pledge was signed by 25 signatories to ensure continued access to funding for the MFI’s flawless operations and protect their clients’ and staff’s well-being.
The signatories agree to coordinate policies, technical assistance, and resources to help microfinance institutions in these unprecedented times.
We contacted Mrs. Popovska to learn more about the project and the expected outcomes for the MFIs. Here is what she shared with us:
Ms. Popovska, as a Chairwoman of the Microfinance Centre, you were one of the common pledge’s signatories to protect MFIs from the COVID-19 economic effects. What are the key principles stated in the document and how do you plan to execute them?
The principles are built around client-centricity and client protection, information sharing, technical assistance, and transparency. As you are aware, the MFI sector serves some of the most vulnerable clients that, at the same time, are often the ones hardest hit by the crisis caused by the pandemic. The industry stakeholders got together in order to adjust the way we go forward in an enabling effort towards our clients’ businesses and their ability to recover.
What do you expect to be the outcomes for the MFIs?
Our hope and our commitment are focused on enabling the industry to survive and continue to serve microfinance institutions, which may be more in need than ever. Even more, to assist the MFIs to adjust to the new needs and reality of their clients.
How do you see the future of the microfinance sector in the Post COVID era?
There is no doubt that the need for financial services in this sector will be even greater. The ways they are delivered needs to move forward. Digital finance is at the top of our agenda, hence we, who work in the digitalization arena, are very finely tuned to the industry needs.