The Première Agence de MicroFinance, a part of the Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance, was launched in 2005. Microfinance activities, which began in the Banfora region, are designed to complement and expand the input credit scheme previously managed by SN-SOSUCO, a major sugar producer that is also a project company of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED). The programme targets seasonal workers, who often must find other economic activity during the off-season, and the population at large in the area. It includes credit for education, health, housing improvement, economic diversification, group credit, emergency loans, as well as others.
The Première Agence de MicroFinance - Burkina Faso has developed products to meet the needs of cotton farmers. A second initiative in Burkina Faso concerns the vast cotton-growing areas south of Ouagadougou, where over 15,000 farmers are occupied with cotton. The local ginneries are operated by FASO COTON, a subsidiary of AKFED. As in the case of SN-SOSUCO, the concept is to deliver microcredit first to cotton farmers, building on the infrastructure of the industrial venture, which will then serve as a cornerstone for serving the broader local population and providing them with an array of services extending far beyond cotton finance.
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