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20 de enero de 2006


United Nations Recognizes Credit Unions As Key Component of Building Inclusive Financial Systems

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The United Nations (U.N.) officially ended its 2005 Year of Microcredit earlier this week by publishing "Building Inclusive Financial Sectors for Development." The document, known as the Blue Book, is the culmination of work by the United Nations and its exploration into how financial sectors can broaden access of financial services to help reduce poverty. The U.N. report recognizes that credit unions have been early innovators in microfinance and that "credit unions continue to show lower costs and higher efficiencies in delivering services than many other institutions and often target rural areas."

"We are pleased that credit unions are so prominently discussed in such an important U.N. document," indicated Dave Grace, World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) senior manager of association services. "As government officials around the world look to increase access to financial services, they will be referencing this piece of work for years to come and seeing the important role that credit unions play in such efforts," continued Grace. U.N.'s Blue Book specifically mentions World Council of Credit Unions, its IRnet remittance service, and its credit union activities in Guatemala, Mexico, Senegal and Nicaragua.

Assuring that credit unions were appropriately represented in the U.N. report was no small task. World Council participated in two invitation-only stakeholder meetings, held by the United Nations in New York and Geneva and was selected as one of a handful of microfinance experts from around the world that the U.N. interviewed with regard to their opinions on building inclusive financial systems. WOCCU staff also conducted two targeted seminars for U.N. staff in 2005, participated in the Friends of the Year of Microcredit Committee, and reviewed various sections of the Blue Book in the weeks leading up to its publication.

The Blue Book can be accessed on-line at http://www.uncdf.org/english/microfinance/bluebook /pub/index.php?get_page=contents.

WOCCU has held special observer status with the United Nations since 1978.



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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