The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Lily Albino, rebuked the commercial banks for failing to give loans to microfinance institutions.
Addressing the participants during the launch of the Association of Microfinance Institutions in South Sudan (AMISS) yesterday, Albino said microfinance institutions in the country have stagnated due to the endemic lack of access to finance.
She said that although commercial banks are considered bigger financial institutions, they have failed to uplift the local microfinance institutions.
She said that some banks have completely refused to give loans, while others try to give some loans, while others do but not to the required expectations.
She appealed to the Ministry of Finance and Planning to support all the microfinance institutions in order to strengthen citizens.
Albino added that for the farmers to perform better, there is a need for them to form associations to enable them to get financial support.
She stated that the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security continues to engage the Agricultural Bank of South Sudan, and the cooperatives to support the microfinance institution but this has failed to materialise.
“We believe that commercial banks should help farmers and financial institutions by giving loans, but that is not the case here; most banks do not give loans,” Albino said.
She called on the Ministry of Finance and Planning to cooperate with other ministries to engage commercial banks to support microfinance institutions and farmer associations.
“We need to champion the need for commercial banks to give loans to the Association of Microfinance Institutions in South Sudan (AMISS),” she appealed.
She argued that when it comes to lending and borrowing, women are mostly at an advantage, and there is a need to support them.
The Chairperson of the Association of Microfinance Institutions in South Sudan (AMISS), Yengi Lokule, appealed to the government to support their initiative to ensure that more members are involved and trained in the finance discipline.
“We need the government to give us financial and technical support so that we can recruit more members and train them on how to manage their businesses,” Yengi said.
He said the Association for Microfinance Association in South Sudan was established to empower the youth and women, adding that when they are empowered, they contribute to economic development.
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