Monday, March 09, 2020 / 5:26 PM / Bukola Akinyele for WebTV / Header Image Credit: Twitter; @isdb_group
As part of efforts to achieve economic empowerment for women in the Organization of Islamic Countries (OIC), the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) is set to kick start the flagship financial inclusion programme.
This is part of the initiatives to enhance participation of women in economic activities in the country, and also explore modalities for increasing access points for them to access financial services.
These services cover areas like savings, investments and insurance which has recorded low participation from women in the OIC countries.
The IsDB has increased its support for women entrepreneurs and innovators across the 57 member countries of the OIC.
At the moment 58% of entrepreneurs & innovators awarded funding through the IsDB Transform Fund are women and 52% of total international scholarships have been awarded to support women to study for Ph.D.-level degrees.
The "Transform Fund" initiative of the IsDB is working to unpack Islamic Finance principles & products to engage global stakeholders in further exploring opportunities to facilitate women's access to financial services, healthcare & economic empowerment.
According to the President of the IsDB Dr. Bandar Hajjar "Societies around the world have seen decades of inequality and denied women and girls the opportunity to thrive and contribute to positive global development. The time for change is now, and equality in funding may be at the very heart of restoring the balance".
In the wake of the recent 2020 International Women's Day celebration in the country, the IsDB President reiterated the commitment of the Development finance institution in ensuring that women and girls in the OIC member states, are supported in their pursuit of equality in funding.
According to the Global Partnership On Financial Inclusion, in the OIC states women are commonly excluded for cultural reason.
Global statistics has shown that more than 1bn women are still financially excluded, coupled with a 9% gender gap in account ownership.