CUNA NEWS NOW
Washington, DC — Representing World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), Gary Plank told a House subcommittee Tuesday that a 2004 microenterprise law provided a good basis for funding accountability, but more must be done to assure the law is implemented as intended.
Plank said that opportunities for small, specialized non-governmental organizations to compete for development funding are decreasing. He said that Congress must ensure the "efficiency and effectiveness" of microenterprise programs by enforcing the central funding of the Microenterprise Development Office as set forth by the Mincroenterprise Results and Accountability Act of 2004.
The WOCCU chairman was testifying before a House international relations subcommittee hearing on whether programs set up under the 2004 Act have been effective in reducing poverty through small business loans in developing countries. The Act was meant to ensure, in part, that U.S. funds are targeted directly to organizations best able to help the poorest members of a poor community.
Plank, who is also president and CEO of the Arizona Credit Union League, said in his statement that WOCCU and CUNA recommend that Congress:
Plank told the panel that although WOCCU's projects range from savings to remittances and insurance, microenterprise lending is always a key component to helping individuals and communities achieve financial security and independence.
To view Plank's testimony in full, click here.
World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development agency for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.
World Council has implemented more than 290 technical assistance programs in 71 countries. Worldwide, 57,000 credit unions in 105 countries serve 217 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.