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09 de diciembre de 2004


In Final Hour, Congress Passes Legislation Significant to International Credit Union Development

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Washington, D.C. – The Senate passed a bill unanimously here late Wednesday focused on advancing access to financial services by the poor and underserved around the world. The Microenterprise Results and Accountability Act of 2004 had already passed the House of Representatives on Nov. 20. The World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), in partnership with the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), advocated strongly for passage of the bill by both Chambers.

The Microenterprise Results and Accountability Act establishes a microenterprise office within USAID and designates $25 million of annual microenterprise appropriations to be used to implement a central funding program. Congress appropriated $200 million for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in omnibus legislation passed November 20 and signed into law Wednesday.

"USAID funding for microenterprise is the source of significant support for international credit union development," explained Molly Schar, WOCCU governmental affairs manager. "Provisions in the Microenterprise Results and Accountability Act strengthen the role of microenterprise development within USAID, provide for increased microenterprise expertise and develop central funding mechanisms that may allow WOCCU and other nonprofit organizations increased opportunities to compete for microenterprise projects."

The U.S. credit union movement rallied to champion this measure to support international credit union development. A number of credit union leagues, including Arizona, California, Illinois, Kentucky, Minnesota, New York, Ohio and Texas, worked with WOCCU, CUNA and key Members of Congress to encourage passage of the microenterprise legislation.

WOCCU's credit union development programs focus on strengthening the financial performance and increasing the outreach of credit unions so that more poor and low-income people have access to financial services, including savings, credit, remittances and insurance.

El Consejo Mundial de Cooperativas de Ahorro y Crédito es la asociación gremial y agencia de desarrollo para el sistema internacional de cooperativas de ahorro y crédito. El Consejo Mundial promueve el crecimiento sustentable de las cooperativas de ahorro y crédito y otras cooperativas financieras en todo el mundo a fin de facultar a las personas para que mejoren su calidad de vida a través del acceso a servicios financieros asequibles y de alta calidad. El Consejo Mundial realiza esfuerzos de defensa activa en representación del sistema global de las cooperativas de ahorro y crédito ante organizaciones internacionales y trabaja con gobiernos nacionales para mejorar la legislación y la regulación. Sus programas de asistencia técnica introducen nuevas herramientas y tecnologías para fortalecer el desempeño financiero de las cooperativas de ahorro y crédito y profundizar su alcance comunitario.

El Consejo Mundial ha implementado 290 programas de asistencia técnica en 71 países. A nivel mundial, 57,000 cooperativas de ahorro y crédito en 103 países atienden a 208 millones de personas. Obtenga más información sobre el impacto global del Consejo Mundial en www.woccu.org.



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