The African Development Bank has announced a new accountability index tool to track the level of lending to women in Africa.
The Women’s Financing Index will be important for ensuring women get the critical financial help they need, African Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina said at the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
The Women’s Financing Index, currently under development, will rate banks and financial institutions who apply for loans from the African Development Bank, against the amounts they have lent or are lending to women.
“Institutions will be rated by their development impact: the rate and volume at which they lend to women,” Adesina said. Top institutions will be rewarded with preferential financing terms from the African Development Bank.
The Bank, through its AFAWA, initiative – Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa – aims to mobilise $3 billion to bridge the financing gap for women on the continent.
Despite being at the forefront of economic activity on the continent, women in Africa are disproportionately disadvantaged, particularly those in conflict-ridden areas, who are three times less likely to go to school, have less access to resources and justice, and are unable to obtain funding for businesses, farming and other commercial ventures.