Micro-Finance Industry ‘Blood Suckers’ Encounter Growing Global Hostility
The hostility toward microfinance is a sharp reversal from the praise and goodwill that's been showered on it in last decade. Philanthropists and investors poured billions into non- and for-profit micro
Unfortunately, India is far from the only place in the world where
the once-vaunted micro-credit business has re-created the human misery it was designed to eliminate forever.
Indeed, microcredit is losing its halo in many developing countries.
It was once extolled by world leaders like Bill Clinton and Tony Blair as a powerful tool that could help eliminate poverty,
through loans as small as $50 to cowherds, basket weavers and other poor people for starting or expanding businesses.
But now microloans have prompted political hostility in Bangladesh, Nicaragua and other developing countries as well as India.
In December, the prime minister of Bangladesh, Sheik Hasina Wazed, who had championed microloans alongside President Clinton at talks in Washington in 1997, turned her back on them.
She said microlenders were “sucking blood from the poor in the name of poverty alleviation,”
and she ordered an investigation into Grameen Bank, which had pioneered microcredit
and, with its founder, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006.
In India, until recently home to the world’s fastest-growing microcredit businesse
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