As of March 31, 2022, the number of active clients of MFI microfinance institutions (Société Anonyme – SA and microcredit associations – AMC) and their outstanding amounts stood at 707,568 clients and 1,775.7 million dinars (MD), respectively. ‘after a bulletin published by the Microfinance Supervisory Authority (ACM).
The amount of the average microcredit is 3,910 dinars
The amount of the average outstanding amount per active client increased by 3% compared to the end of March 2021, rising to 2,510 dinars, while the outstanding amount of microfinance granted by MFIs SA increased by 9.5% against a decline of 1% for AMCs and represents, as of 03-31-2022, 84.6% of the total outstanding amount of the microfinance sector.
The ACM indicates in its bulletin that the disbursements of MFIs (SA and AMC) recorded during the first quarter of the year 2022 a drop of 2% compared to the same period of the year 2021, going to 392 MD . This reduction in the volume of activity is mainly attributable to the decline in activity observed at 5 MFI SAs and the absence of disbursement of microfinance by the AMCs throughout the first quarter of the current year.
The amount of the average microcredit remained almost stable around 3,910 dinars during the first three months of 2021 and 2022.
Very high interest rates
However, according to the ACM’s 2021 annual report, the weighted average overall effective rate (TEG) of MFIs SA has experienced an upward trend over the past 4 years, rising to 32.86% at the end of the second half of the year. year 2021, thus registering an average annual growth rate of 2.1%. The average TEG of IMF SA reached 31.80% in the first half of 2022.
The consolidated net result of IMF SA reached 57 MD on 31-12-2021, thus recording an increase of 148.91% compared to the previous year.
The high level of interest rates charged by many MFIs is an issue of growing concern and several questions arise in this regard: How do MFIs whose purpose is the financial inclusion of the most vulnerable charge interest as high as heavy? How do public authorities tolerate these practices? Is it acceptable that the most vulnerable suffer the repercussions of policies that aggravate their precariousness? What are the mechanisms to protect the poor from obtaining loans at abusive interest rates?
While microcredit has long been unanimous, studies describe its effect in terms of increasing the indebtedness of the poor and their precariousness in several countries and challenge the perception that confirms that microcredit makes it possible to fight against poverty. .
Faced with the increase in microcredit outstandings at very high interest rates, one can easily expect the aggravation of Tunisians’ already heavy indebtedness.
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