CGAP Annual Report 2003

2003 Highlights

  • CGAP conducted a study on foreign capital in microfinance programs.
  • In collaboration with the Open Society Institute and USAID, CGAP commissioned the regional Microfinance Centre (headquartered in Warsaw, Poland) to conduct the first comprehensive study of microfinance in Central and Eastern Europe and the New Independent States.
  • CGAP partnered with Global Alliance, a non-governmental organization concerned with improving conditions for workers in the garment industry in India. In collaboration with ICICI Bank, the largest private bank in India, Global Alliance and CGAP are seeking to develop contractual saving services—among other financial services—for garment workers with the support and participation of the factories that employ them.
  • In partnership with FinMark Trust, CGAP is providing advisory services to South Africa’s Department of Social Development to improve the payments mechanisms of its social grants.
  • CGAP developed the Poverty Assessment Tool (for collecting rigorous statistical data on relative poverty levels of clients) because it believes that there is an urgent need for tools that provide meaningful information on absolute poverty levels without imposing undue administrative burdens on the practitioners employing the tools.
  • With support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), CGAP conducted a brief assessment of nearly 80 agricultural microfinance providers during fiscal year 2003 to identify effective approaches to agricultural finance.
  • In 2003, CGAP examined current research that specifically documented the impact of microfinance on different aspects of poverty identified as MDG priorities. Presented in Focus Note No. 24, Is Microfinance an Effective Strategy to Reach the Millennium Development Goals? this evidence indicates that microfinance can enable the poor to attain many of the Millennium Development Goals on their own, in a self-directed way.
  • CGAP launched an initiative to evaluate the potential of new information technologies to improve the outreach and efficiency of microfinance.
  • CGAP pioneered a model for donor coordination in Afghanistan, creating an all-donor sector-building facility with the World Bank—the Microfinance Investment and Support Facility in Afghanistan (MISFA).
  • CGAP also worked closely with key donors such as USAID, DFID, ILO, and the World Bank to ensure close donor cooperation in microfinance.
  • CGAP launched its online donor resource center in fiscal year 2003, the DIRECT.
  • In 2003, CGAP collaborated with the Financial Sector and Rural Development Departments of the World Bank and published the first of a potential series of Operational Notes. The first note, written jointly by the Social Protection Unit and CGAP, is Microfinance and Social Funds: Guidelines for Microfinance in Poverty-Focused, Multi-sectoral Projects.
  • CGAP staff also co-authored the rural finance models for the World Bank Agricultural Investment Sourcebook, which outlines good practice models and practical guidelines for World Bank project managers and specialists.