Economically empowering businesswomen and entrepreneurs in the region through the implementation of various initiatives such as the Regional Business Financing Program for Women (FEM) and the Financial Sector Support Facility for MSMEs affected by COVID-19 is one of the objectives of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI).
The financial institution reaffirms its commitment to continue the economic autonomy of women; therefore, to date, it has served 4,685 micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) led by women.
Dante Mossi, executive president of CABEI, indicated that the role of women in the region’s economy is key to social and productive development, which is why the bank is committed to continuing to promote initiatives that support the empowerment of women as contemplated in the Institutional Strategy 2020–2024.
In contributing to the growth and modernization of companies led by women in the region through its FEM program, CABEI has managed to benefit a total of 6,024 companies with the placement of more than $30.9 million in financing channeled through 12 intermediary financial institutions (IFIs), to boost their business.
«The strength with which women develop their businesses to contribute to their family nucleus is admirable, since 52% of the financing disbursed with this initiative was made to women who wanted to start a business, while 36% went to women-owned companies . In addition, in these companies, more than 50% of women were employed», added Mossi.
Another key initiative with a gender equality approach is the Financial Sector Support Facility for MSMEs affected by COVID-19, which, since its implementation in 2020, has managed to protect more than 22,000 women’s jobs and impact more than 3,200 companies led by them through the placement of more than $45 million in credits and more than $5 million through the guarantee fund supported with resources from UN Women.
The credits channeled through the Financial Sector Support Facility for MSMEs affected by COVID-19 were used to retain and rehire personnel as well as promote and generate new jobs in sectors such as hotels and tourism, agri-food production, trade, services, and media, construction, and renewable energy, among others.
With these efforts, CABEI supports the female entrepreneurial spirit to continue promoting the sustainable and inclusive development of the region, fostering the growth and capitalization of MSMEs.