Citi Philippines has extended a US$20 million loan to ASA Philippines Foundation to provide financial assistance to low-income women for entrepreneurial ventures in the country. Nearly 70,000 women micro-entrepreneurs are expected to benefit from the programme.
ASA Philippines Foundation aims to improve the livelihood of low-income women entrepreneurs through microfinance and other social services. The non-profit, non- stock financial institution serves over 2 million women entrepreneurs through more than 1,600 branches across 82 provinces in the Philippines.
The foundation also provides an array of services to clients including burial assistance, college/university scholarship programmes, disaster relief assistance and rehabilitation, business development training and marketing support, medical missions, child feeding and out-of-school youth training.
The financing for this loan was structured under the Global Inclusive Finance Framework risk-sharing facility with the United States International Development Finance Corporation.
The transaction contributes to Citi’s US$1 trillion commitment to sustainable finance by 2030, supporting its economic inclusion criteria to improve access to credit and financial services among the vulnerable or underserved communities, including micro, small, and medium enterprise financing.
Citi has also committed to investing in opportunities for 15 million households, including 10 million women by 2025.
ASA Philippines president and chief executive officer Kamrul Tarafder comments: “With the help of this funding, we will be able to achieve the next milestone of 2.5 million active borrowers. By providing MalASAkit (interest-free) financing, this funding will allow us to assist clients' businesses that were impacted by the pandemic and natural disasters.”