European Investment Bank (EIB)
After the Jasmine Revolution, the improved access and use of financial services emerged as a priority for the country's socioeconomic development. The following figures are highly indicative of the entire issue: even if nowadays the entire Tunisian population holds an account in a banking institution, 64% does not have access to the various financing services or makes a very limited use (CGAP 2015).
The six-year MicroMED program was launched in 2013, in response to the requirements identified by the Republic of Tunisia. Through the support it brings to the microfinance sector, MicroMED aims at promoting job creation and financial inclusion, by improving low-income populations’ access to financial services (credit, savings, payments, fund transfers, etc.) and by developing the microfinance institutions’ ability to meet growing demand.
MicroMED promotes the strengthening of skills and qualifications by supporting educational initiatives in academic and on-going training. The program provides technical assistance to professional organisations and public authorities, through contributing to their training and by raising their awareness of the industry’s best practices and evolving regulations.
A flagship project in Tunisia’s social and economic integration, MicroMED covers the MENA region.
Through improving and disseminating knowledge on financial inclusion, market growth and greater transparency, ADA helps create conditions that allow microfinance institutions to better meet the specific requirements of 3.5 million families and 245,000 Tunisian companies, which are still excluded from financial services as the services currently on offer are not tailored to their needs.
ADA was selected as an expert in inclusive finance, to support the implementation of the MicroMED project to strengthen the sector and contribute to the development of inclusive finance.
Two lines of action are going to be implemented in order to address this issue:
1. Supporting the creation of a national observatory on financial inclusion
This observatory, which will be hosted at the Central Bank of Tunisia, will both analyse and monitor the state and development of financial inclusion in Tunisia. It will also be entrusted with the task of disseminating information and, more specifically, will serve as a tool to support decision-making for the public authorities, operators and donors.
2. Building the capacity of the stakeholders and developing the market
This will involve supporting the economic and institutional viability of the microfinance operators, improving the staff’s skills, making the practitioners aware of good practice in microfinance, providing information to the segments of the population targeted by microfinance.
Philippe de Fontaine Vive Curtaz, Honorary Vice-president of the European Investment Bank
"The MicroMED Tunisia program is an excellent example of how partners can work together for a higher goal, namely the promotion of financial inclusion through our projects."
Philippe de Fontaine Vive Curtaz, Vice - President of the European Investment Bank
Download the Study on financial inclusion in Tunisia, ADA, February 2014 (french)