Women to access cheaper loans in advancing financial inclusion
Women in Kenya has a reason to smile and will now access cheaper loans in a new Government plan aimed at advancing financial inclusion in the country.
President William Ruto said under the remodelled Women Enterprise Fund (WEP), women will borrow at a rate of six per cent a year. He said the move will reach more women and accelerate their economic empowerment.The loans will be accessed instantly unlike in the past when the processing took 45 days.
“We have also eliminated financial intermediaries. This will boost access and check credit costs,” said the President.
He was speaking on Thursday at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre(KICC)during the re-launch of the Women Enterprise Fund and the launch of the second product of the Hustler Fund.
The President noted that with more loan products that have shorter repayment periods, the Fund will empower more women and strengthen their financial muscle.
He announced that the development of a Sharia compliant product is underway to attend to Muslim consumers.
At the same time, the President reported the launch of the Individual Micro Loan Product under the Hustler Fund to provide affordable credit to informal businesses.
“The product will be available to hustlers who will be eligible for amounts of between Sh10,000 and Sh100,000 at an annual interest rate of seven per cent.”
At the function were Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua, Cabinet Secretaries, Principal Secretaries and Governors.
Mr.Gachagua asked women to keep fighting for their political space in the country.
“You have the requisite skills and energy that we require to move Kenya forward,” he said.
Council of Governors Chairman and Kirinyaga Governor Ann Waiguru said technology has offered a unique chance to confront the perennial challenge of financial exclusion, especially among women.
She noted that the Council of Governors will endeavour to work towards empowering women by ensuring “they are at the centre of our transformation plan”.
On her part, Embu Governor Cecily Mbarire observed that while progress has been made in women empowerment, more work needs to be done.
“We must keep pushing for more opportunities to lead, especially in the political and economic space,” she said.