Haiti – Economy : Micro-insurance for micro-credit

The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is to establish a multi-donor trust fund to support the establishment of a micro-insurance, which aims to provide parametric insurance to protect micro-credit borrowers in Haiti against losses resulting from major natural events. CDB will act as trustee and administrator of the fund, Micro Insurance Catastrophe Risk Organisation Fund (MiCRO). The Government of the United Kingdom will make an initial contribution of $1.5 millions of dollars to the fund, and it is anticipated that other donors will contribute over the short to medium term.

In Haiti, microfinance institutions have flourished by providing small loans mainly to self-employed persons. The January 2010 earthquake has had a devastating impact on micro entrepreneurs, who experienced loss of assets, suppliers and markets. The microfinance sector, which provides micro loans to sustain and stimulate many of these businesses, also suffered extensive losses.

MiCRO, inter alia, is expected to contribute to a more robust and sustainable private sector in Haiti, through improved access to financial services after a major natural events, and to increasing the viability and sustainability of Haiti’s microfinance sector.

MiCRO will be reinsured by Swiss Re, one of the world’s largest and most diversified reinsurers.

The purpose of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is to contribute to the harmonious economic growth and development of the member countries in the Caribbean and to promote economic cooperation among them, having special and urgent regard for the needs of the less developed members of the region. CDB finances specific projects in national, sub-regional, or regional development programmes in such fields as agriculture, livestock, fisheries, forestry, marketing, manufacturing, mining, refining, tourism, export services, transportation, housing, education, pure water, sewerage and infrastructure and services related to the development of those sectors of the economy, waste management, environment protection and poverty reduction. The Republic of Haiti became the newest member of the Caribbean Development Bank on January 19, 2007.

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