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Program on Fintech’s Role in Increasing Access to Finance for MSMEs

Nepal Bankers’ Association (NBA) in collaboration with United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), Fintech Alliance Nepal (FAN) and Aloi organized an interaction pogrom on Fintech’s Role in Increasing Access to Finance for MSMEs. The main objective of the program was to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and foster collaboration among key stakeholders, particularly banks, development finance institutions (DFIs) and Fintech companies, regarding the potential role of the Fintech industry in increasing access to finance for MSMEs.

UNCDF, Country Relationship Manager, Mr. Saroj Nepal commenced the event with an opening remark underscoring the significance of the program. He emphasized the pivotal role that MSMEs have been playing in driving both economic and social development within the country. He also pointed out numerous obstacles including substantial funding gap and limited access to finance as some of the major challenges that the MSMEs have being facing.

During the program, CEO of Aloi Global, Ms. Tiffany Tong made an insightful presentation entitled “Global Trends in Productive Lending – Opportunities & Challenges”. She highlighted the international landscape, offering insights into leveraging Fintech to boost access to finance for MSMEs. Ms. Tong explained global best practices and shared exemplary cases of employing Fintech solutions to address the financing needs of MSMEs. Furthermore, she also touched upon climate/green finance impact tracking and productive lending to MSMEs.

At the event, UNESCAP representative, Ms. Christina Margaret Morrison delivered the remarks focusing on the importance of MSMEs for both developed and developing courtiers. Furthermore, she said that in the context where Nepal is graduating from least developed country, the role of MSMEs will become even more critical in shaping the country’s economic landscape and fostering sustainable development in Nepal.

Director of the PSD Department of Nepal Rastra Bank, Mr. Laxmi Prasad Prasai shared insights into Central Bank’s initiatives aimed to boost the MSMEs sector. He emphasized the concerted efforts made by Nepal Rastra Bank to prioritize and support the MSMEs sector, recognizing its significance in the country. He also emphasized the importance of collective action from various sectors to effectively address the hurdles slowing the growth and development of MSMEs.

Delivering a closing remark, NBA Senior Research Officer, Mr. Kapil Gautam expressed gratitude to all the participants. He highlighted the importance of collaboration among concerned stakeholders to address the significant challenges encountered by MSMEs and urged everyone for the collective effort. Mr. Gautam further reiterated Nepal Bankers’ Association’s commitment to support such initiatives.

During the program, representatives from various MSMEs shared their success stories, illustrating how Fintech solutions aided them in overcoming diverse challenges. The program was followed by a panel discussion where the esteemed panelists from banking sector, development partners and Fintech experts shared their valuable insights on the subject matter. The event was attended by officials from Nepal Rastra Bank, representatives from MSMEs, officials from Commercial Banks, representatives from DFIs and Fintech companies, among others.