Unified Code of Conduct
Indian microfinance sector went through a crisis in 2010 with allegations of over-indebtedness and coercive recovery practices, undermining investor and consumer trust in the sector. There was a need to consolidate the various initiatives in the sector and take concerted action to bring back credibility and prevent further aggravation of crisis. Responsible Finance Forum took the lead and facilitated meetings and discussions to unify the two separate codes of conduct of MFIN and Sa-dhan for the microfinance institutions. The Unified code of conduct enshrines customer protection principles, good governance benchmarks and market behavior and was launched in December 2011 by MFIN and Sa-dhan, signaling the acceptance of the same by the microfinance industry. The document is available at this link.
Considering the changing financial inclusion landscape of the country and the responsible finance challenges, the Forum is now working on the revision of unified code of conduct.
Directory of Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) in India
Indian Microfinance sector has witnessed phenomenal growth over the past 15 years. Number of Institutions (of different legal forms) providing microfinance services have gone up from a few numbers to several hundreds. It was also difficult to obtain comprehensive information on the type, number, and locations etc of these institutions that provide financial access to around 30 million people.The idea of a directory for MFIs in India was evolved by Responsible Finance Forum to enumerate MFIs that provide at least microcredit in the country. The necessity to the directory arose from the perceptible dilemma of policy makers and the regulator on the level of supervisory attention required regulating the sector. The directory is an attempt to provide list of MFIs actively operating in the country so as to help the policy makers, regulators and others to have a readymade inventory of MFIs in the nation. The directory is available for download at this link.
Responsible Finance Newsletters
As part of its initiative to raise awareness and communicate on Responsible Finance initiatives within and outside the sector, the Forum has come up with newsletters providing a comprehensive picture on the various aspects of responsible finance initiatives. The first newsletter focused on Code of conduct assessments, initiatives by members while the second newsletter has focused on the theme “Client Grievance Redressal Mechanisms”, one of the Client Protection Principles.
• Supporting Responsible Microfinance in India,
• Building Inclusive Credit Information Bureaus: A Project to Make Financial Inclusion More Transparent & Meaningful
• Responsible Finance Forum Second Newsletter