Haiti Integrated Finance for Value Chains and Enterprises
Haiti Integrated Finance for Value Chains and Enterprises (HIFIVE) is USAID/Haiti's next phase in a sequenced strategy to further develop the country's financial services sector to promote employment generation, to improve livelihoods and to boost the economy. HIFIVE's activities will specifically focus on improving the availability of financial products and services to support the expansion of agricultural and other production and the access to financial products and services in rural and agricultural areas.
Awarded in June 2009 under the FIELD-Support Leader with Associates (LWA) cooperative agreement, FHI360 is the lead organization implementing this three-to-five year, US$34.4 million program in partnership with World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) and TechnoServe.
Vision and Strategy
HIFIVE is a financial sector service project designed to encourage a dynamic Haitian economy by increasing the availability of financial products and services to its people and to its enterprises. A catalyst and a facilitator, HIFIVE will work primarily on the supply side of the financial sector to empower Haitians by providing access to innovative financial products and services with a focus on rural areas, targeting high potential value chains, encouraging Diaspora investments, supporting the use of technology while maximizing synergies with other USAID projects.
HIFIVE will improve the capacity of a core group of financial suppliers — namely strong microfinance institutions (MFIs), banks receiving deposit credit authority (DCA) support from USAID, caisses populaires (credit cooperatives) and insurance companies to design and deliver appropriate financial products to value chain participants and other bankable enterprises involved in USAID's other projects. Working with the financial institutions, technology providers and USAID's other priority agricultural projects, HIFIVE will support the development of solutions that will expand the financial services outreach to rural and agricultural zones.
It is HIFIVE's responsibility to use appropriate incentives and risk management strategies to encourage the core financial institutions to provide innovative and sustainable financial services, with a special emphasis on increasing access to financial products and services in rural areas, increasing the availability of value chain finance, increasing the use of ICT solutions to expand financial inclusion and improving the effectiveness of remittances as a development tool.
Since inception, HIFIVE has begun implementation activities including:
HIFIVE co-sponsored with SOGEBANK Foundation the Diaspora Unity Congress of The Haitian League in Fort Lauderdale on August 6 - 9, 2009. A presentation by Chief of Party Greta Greathouse and Deputy Chief of Party Elie Lafortune to Congress challenged the diaspora to become active investors in Haiti. Their speech also highlighted the new program's objectives and its planned activities to engage Haitian diaspora in support of increased developmental impact of remittances to Haiti. HIFIVE's early activities on diaspora include the creation of a Working Group on Diaspora Issues in Haiti, led by HIFIVE. The group is comprised of representatives of other donor projects, the Haitian government and local diaspora groups. Former President William Clinton (U.N. Special Envoy to Haiti) and Haitian Prime Minister Michele Pierre Louis also addressed Congress.
HIFIVE has created a Microfinance Sector working group on ICT solutions to encourage dialogue among sector participants on their priorities and to encourage the development of common solutions.
HIFIVE launched its Innovations in Finance lecture series on September 28, 2009, with the presentation of the results of USAID's 2008 Census of Microfinance in Haiti.
HIFIVE has designed the HIFIVE Catalyst Fund, a US$22.5 million grant fund. Grants from the fund will help partners:
- develop and launch ICT solutions including mobile banking and branchless banking solutions as well as remittance-related products
- provide funding for a variety of local capacity building activities in the financial service and technology sectors
- encourage diverse risk management solutions that will reduce economic vulnerability in Haiti and promote the diversification of credit products available
- provide funding to promote the diversification of financial product and services available to serve MSMEs operating in value chains and in rural zones