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Horizon 2037 Fair Finance for All: 20th MFC Annual Conference
May 24 - May 26
Originally published by the Microfinance Center (MFC). Cover photo credit: MFC
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The MFC will turn 20 this year, and we cordially invite you to participate in the MFC 20th annual conference to celebrate our landmark anniversary together with you. This event will be titled “Horizon 2037: Fair Finance for All”, and we are thrilled to be holding it in Bosnia & Herzegovina, which boasts the most dynamic European microfinance sector and which will celebrate its own 20th anniversary — of the founding of the first microfinance institutions in Bosnia.
In the past two decades, MFC has cemented its position as the region’s leading access to finance resource centre and network, currently uniting 103 microfinance institutions, social investors, country level networks and support organizations. We also work in strategic partnership with the European Commission, collaborate with the International Finance Corporation, EBRD, EIB, EIF and many others. Over the last 20 years, our practitioner members have become sustainable, responsible and inclusive institutions serving over one million micro-entrepreneurs.
To mark this significant milestone, we have designed a unique conference program featuring renowned thinkers, experts and special guests that were involved with setting up the sector in the 1990s. As every anniversary provides an opportunity for reflection, we would like to use this event to imagine how major sector developments over the past two decades will serve us in the next two decades — and whether in 2037 we will be celebrating having reached full financial inclusion. In particular, we will discuss how technology is transforming financial systems, disrupting traditional banking and the foundations of our current social structures — including the role of governments. We will consider the implications of the digital revolution and how microfinance institutions can be pro-active in embracing and leveraging technology to provide valuable opportunities for entrepreneurs, start-ups and social enterprises. And is there a new role for socially-oriented microfinance? We think so, and hope to provide some guidance and inspiration for practitioners to take an active role in imagining our collective future as a sector, and laying the groundwork for the milestones we will celebrate in time for our 40th anniversary.
Workshops and plenary sessions
Against this anniversary thematic backdrop, and in response to feedback from MFC members, the conference programme will address good practice in providing support to start-ups, as well as digitalization opportunities. We will also present new perspectives on transformation options for non-bank MFIs and provide updates on the new EU support tools for microfinance (including the long-awaited capacity building investment instrument), examine different ways microfinance can support a green economy, talk about social enterprise and the ways that MFIs can support them, discuss various recent regulatory challenges in member countries, and more.
Pre-conference workshops and meetings
This year, as a part of our responsible finance agenda we would like to invite you for a special pre-conference workshop and discussion on responsible pricing. We would like to explore together what we mean by responsible pricing, what we can do together as a sector on this subject, what each individual microfinance institution can do to ensure adequate and fair pricing. We also invite each MFC member institutions to the MFC Membership Meeting that will take place on (the exact date will be specified soon) May 2017. This meeting will be an opportunity to discuss the MFC strategic plan, get to know the new MFC members and network at a special members-only anniversary event.
Visits to MFIs
Together with MFC members in Bosnia, we have prepared a special program of visits to local MFIs. Stay tuned for the detailed program and registration details.
To register online please find the on-line form here. Before you register, remember to check whether you need a visa to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina. For more details head to the visa section of the conference website.