Microfinance

FMO continues to believe in microfinance as a strong tool for development, so long as it is applied for productive uses and everything is done to avoid client over-indebtedness. When we engage in consumer finance, we apply the Smart Campaign's Client Protection Principles, since consumer finance institution clients often have a low income, are vulnerable to economic downturn and are often first-time entrants into the financial sector. The Client Protection Principles (CPP) cover areas including avoiding over-indebtedness, as well as ensuring transparent pricing and ethical staff behavior.

Uruguayan finance company Creditel last year became the first FMO client to receive an interest rate reduction for successfully implementing and completing the Client Protection action plan (based on the SMART Client Protection Principles).

Almost without exception the abovementioned successes have had support from the Capacity Development Program we manage on behalf of the Dutch State.