Prospect for Income Generation and Employment Creation through Urban Microfinance

A seminar titled “Prospect for Income Generation and Employment Creation through Urban Microfinance” was organised by InMat the PKSF conference room on the 12th January, 2010. Professor Salim Rashid, Professor of Economics, University of Illinois Urban Champaign, USA also a visiting scholar of InM was the keynote speaker.

Prof. M.A. Baqui Khalilly, Executive Director, InM chaired the seminar. Representatives from national and international organisations, research institutions, academicians and practitioners were present in the seminar.

Key note Speech:
In his paper Professor Salim Rashid focused on the state, impact and potential of Microfinance regarding income generation and employment creation in urban area. The paper unveils many new findings on urban microfinance on which hardly any research has been carried out. He gave an overview about the current socio-economic situation of the urban poor people who mostly live in slum. In addition he focused on the dimension of poverty in the urban area and compared it with rural poverty.

One of the interesting findings of the study is that poor people dwelling in the slum are paying very high house rent despite they are deprived of the basic utility facilities. The major findings are that the MFIs activities increased sharply in the urban area since 2005 and the average income of the participants has increased. Overlapping of MFIs is a common feature in urban area where participants taking multiple loans have higher income. He revealed some potential features of MFIs activities such as bridging the gap of capital market and managing infrastructure. In conclusion, Professor Salim Rashid emphasised on the role of MFI in new employment creation and sustaining the existing employment…

Comments of the Chair:
Prof. M.A. Baqui Khalilly pointed out that although microfinance has extended its operational activities in the urban area, no significant research has been done regarding the impact of microfinance on poverty reduction and development.

He mentioned that in this study only the demand side of microfinance has been focused. In his concluding remark he commented that this study has opened a new window for further research regarding the urban microfinance