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India becomes member of CGAP

india Updated: Apr 07, 2012 00:00 IST

The industry body of micro-lenders MFIN has said that India has become a member of Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), which is an international apex body for micro-finance.

"India has been admitted as a member of CGAP two days ago. The implication is that for the first time, a developing country has joined CGAP," Managing Director of Basix Micro finance and President of Micro-Finance Institutions Network (MFIN) Vijay Mahajan told PTI on Friday.

"Secondly, India will get a place in the world table on the issue of financial inclusion. G20, in their economic agenda, made financial inclusion one of the topics. CGAP is a secretariat for that," he said.

CGAP is an independent policy and research center dedicated to advancing financial access for the world's poor. It is supported by over 30 development agencies and private foundations, who share a common mission to alleviate poverty.

Housed at the World Bank, CGAP provides market intelligence, promotes standards, develops innovative solutions and offers advisory services to governments, financial service providers, donors, and investors.

India has also become a donor country after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's announcement of $6 billion package to Africa, Mahajan added.

In India, the micro finance sector is reeling under severe cash crunch following the introduction of AP Micro finance Act in 2010 that curtailed activities of MFIs in Andhra Pradesh.

Andhra accounted for nearly 30% of the total micro-finance business in the country, which was pegged at Rs 30,000 crore in 2010.