Access to finance remains one of the key challenges for Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs) in Bangladesh despite various enabling policy initiatives undertaken by Bangladesh Bank (BB) and Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA). BFP-B Project aims to reduce the risks and costs of financial institutions to improve access to finance for MSEs. The Policy Component of BFP-B Project is working to remove regulatory obstacles and support innovation in the formal financial sector. BFP-B is sponsoring independent technical analysis, bringing good practice from outside Bangladesh, and facilitating dialogue. The Policy Component is working closely with national stakeholders (regulators, policy makers and market actors) who will be the drivers of change. The Policy Component has prioritised 8 policy issues including the development of a National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) for Bangladesh. These policy issues were approved by the BFP-B Policy Advisory Committee (PAC).
List of 8 policy studies
- Diagnostics of Microenterprise Lending by MFIs in Bangladesh: Opportunities and Challenges.
- Review the SME Credit- related policies of Bangladesh Bank: Identify areas of further improvement by focusing on MSE Finance.
- Development of a Comprehensive National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) for Bangladesh.
NFIS Sectoral Studies:
3a) Definition of Financial Inclusion for Bangladesh.
3b) Banking Sector Study.
3c) Microfinance Sector Study.
3d) Insurance Sector Study.
3e) Short demand-side study.
- Mobile Financial Services for MSEs in Bangladesh: Prospects and challenges.
- Cluster and Value Chain financing for MSEs in Bangladesh: Current practices and what can be done.
- Innovative MSE Financing Products and Delivery Channels in Bangladesh: Opportunities and Challenges.
- Feasibility Study on Transformation of MFIs into Regulated Microfinance Banks/Finance Company: Bangladesh Perspective.
- Addressing Market Demand through Agent Banking: Lessons learnt.
Policy component activities
- Fostering Dialogue: Organising Policy Advisory Committee (PAC) and Policy Working Committee (PWC) meetings, task-oriented sub-committee meetings, stakeholders’ consultation sessions, policy dialogues, focus group discussions, conferences, seminars, and workshops.
- Research and Technical Assistance (TA): Identifying research areas relevant to policy issues, recruiting consultants (local / international) to conduct research studies, prepare a TA strategic plan for regulators.
- Knowledge Management: Publishing study reports, policy briefs, newsletters, and annual reports. Disseminating publications to different stakeholders and upload them to the BFP-B website.
- Advocacy and Communication: Organising seminars and workshops, and lobby for policy or regulatory reforms and promoting innovation.
- Monitoring and Evaluation: Monitoring and evaluating implementation of policy or regulatory reforms and conducting surveys to understand their impact.