Geo Tau Aisay

Microfinance borrowers reach an all-time high of 4 Million

The first quarter of 2016 witnessed upward trend in microcredit outreach with active borrowers to reach an all-time high of 4 million and the Gross Loan Portfolio (GLP) of the sector crossed the landmark figure of PKR 100 billion.

Growth in microcredit outreach continues to be driven by the Microfinance Banks (MFBs), whose active borrowers and GLP increased by 12.1% and 16.1% respectively. In the current quarter, NRSP Bank was the largest contributor: the bank added 59,210 new borrowers and a loan portfolio of PKR 2.1 billion – surpassing ASA and Tameer Bank (TMFB) to become the fourth largest provider of microcredit in the sector. The bank’s growth was fuelled by the livestock sector where 31,000 new borrowers were financed, followed by the agriculture sector which added 24,000 new borrowers. In terms of peer groups, Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) were the second largest contributor to outreach growth, mostly owning to Akhuwat, which added 57,189 new borrowers and a loan portfolio of PKR 1.4 billion.

In terms of savings, the number of active savers decreased marginally by 1.9%, whereas, the value of savings posted modest growth of 4.6%. MFBs were the sole contributors to active savers by adding 133,000 new deposit accounts while, on the other hand, non-bank MFPs witnessed a decline in active savers by 404,000. APNA bank (AMFB) saw the largest increase in the value of deposits (by PKR 1.7 billion), followed by KBL (by PKR 1.3 billion). In terms of number of savers, Waseela Bank witnessed the largest increase (by 26%), mainly owing to an uptake in branchless banking account holders.

Micro-insurance demonstrated considerable growth in the current quarter as the number of policy holders increased by 20.6%, whereas the sum insured posted growth of 9.3%. The major increase in policy holders came on the back of Kashf Foundation which has started offering health insurance coverage to all credit clients (including their family members). Kashf Foundation is now the largest provider of micro-insurance policy holders with a market share of 30%. The sector continues to be dominated by only two types of insurance policies; health and credit life, each holding a market share of 48% and 51% respectively.

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