Poor People Benefit from Micro Financing

A seminar to develop small-scale financial systems in Vietnam to provide channels for capital to low income earners and small-sized enterprises was held in Hanoi on December 18. Tran Minh Tuan, Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), said the above-mentioned target population has difficulty reaching the system of banking services, therefore, access to micro-finance sources should help prevent them from lapsing into poverty. In Vietnam, there are three forms of small-scale financing services, with official institutions dominated by the Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development and the Vietnam Social Policy Bank. Semi-official creditors include various funds and development support centers, under SBV supervision, are another form of lending for low-income earners and small-sized enterprises. Low income earners may also raise capital through Rotating Saving and Credit Associations (ROSCA) or go to individual lenders for money. Between 2001 and 2008, the number of small-scale financial institutions sharply increased their number of both credit and savings. Between 70% and 80% of some 4.6 million poor families nationwide have access to at least one financial service, mostly in terms of credit. Experts at the seminar called on small-scaled financial institutions to streamline procedures, apply fast and flexible lending mechanisms and increase non-mortgage lending.