CAMEROON: USAID Partners with Ecobank to Increase Financing for Small Health Enterprises
The Deputy Managing Director of Ecobank Cameroon, Gwendoline Abunaw, and Matthew Smith, U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission to Cameroon, celebrating a new partnership to increase financing for health enterprises in Cameroon
U.S. Embassy Yaounde
For Immediate Release
Thursday, May 26, 2016
Sharon Kellman Yett
(233) 30 274 1599
Yaoundé – Today, U.S. Government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and Ecobank Cameroon SA announced a new partnership that will mobilize up to U.S. $3.7 million of local financing over eight years for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working in the health sector in Cameroon. Financing will be made available via loans to health SMEs and NGOs which provide family planning, reproductive health and maternal/child health services or products.
“Through this partnership with Ecobank Cameroon, we will together promote better health for women and children in Cameroon,” said Matthew Smith, U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission to Cameroon. “By helping small and medium health enterprises gain access to loans, we enable them to purchase equipment, expand facilities, and improve supply chain management and service delivery.”
Ecobank Cameroon will make more loans available to qualifying borrowers, such as private retail pharmacies, hospitals, clinics, diagnostics laboratories, medical training facilities and other small and medium enterprises in Cameroon for working capital and investment needs. USAID will provide technical assistance to those borrowers to improve their business operations and loan management capacity.
“This unique partnership demonstrates the commitment of Ecobank Cameroon to make a significant contribution to support the private health sector in Cameroon, and increase the image of the bank as a strong partner for a sustainable growth,” said Gwendoline Abunaw, Deputy Managing Director of Ecobank Cameroon.
The private health sector in Cameroon plays a critical role in service delivery: 49 percent of all hospital patient visits in Cameroon were in private facilities, and the 2011 Demographic Health Survey data show that 77 percent of family planning users indicate the private sector as the source of their contraceptives