The Association of Microfinance Institutions of Gabon (APEMFG) announced on March 31 its intention to identify all informal microfinance structures and denounce them to the competent authorities. An approach aimed at “protecting the savings of economic operators in the Gabonese Republic”.
Disgusted by the emergence of informal microfinance institutions (EMF), the Association of Microfinance Institutions of Gabon (APEMFG) has decided to take the bull by the horns. In The union of March 31, this group announced that it will identify “all informal structures that pose as microfinance institutions and denounce them to the competent authorities”. An approach that aims to “protect the savings of economic operators in the Gabonese Republic”.
Indeed, an MFI receives deposits from its customers, grants loans, monitors their repayments, handles cash. Over the first nine months of 2021, deposits collected by MFIs amounted to 72.3 billion CFA francs, up nearly 16.0%, compared to 62.4 billion CFA francs in 2020 at the same period. This change is mainly due to the commercial performance of the sector leaders Finam, Loxia (taken over by BGFIBank), EDG and Express-Union. These establishments alone account for nearly 91% of customers in the sector.
“The microfinance sector is supervised and only MFIs approved by the National Economic and Financial Commission (CNEF), after assent of the Central African Banking Commission (COBAC), are authorized to carry out the activity of microfinance. in the Gabonese Republic”, recalled the APEMFG. However, noted the association to regret it, “several informal operators misrepresent themselves to the general public as microfinance institutions”. Thus, the APEMFG invited the public and “especially the press”, not to “maintaining confusion between a regulated sector and structures that settle in the informal sector”.