US govt agency OPIC offers $10m financing to Myanmar’s Early Dawn Microfinance

Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. government’s development finance institution, is extending a $10-million financing package to Myanmar’s Early Dawn Microfinance Ltd (DAWN).

The US Ambassador to Myanmar, Scot Marciel, announced the $10 million programme in association with Yoma Bank, Early Dawn Microfinance and OPIC on May 29, according to the Facebook post of the U.S. Embassy Rangoon.

“This $10 million project between the U.S. government, Yoma Bank, and DAWN will help more people in Myanmar access loans so they can start new businesses, help keep their kids in school, and invest in farms,” Marciel said.

The financing will be a follow-on commitment from OPIC in DAWN. Last May, the US agency announced a $5-million loan to help the microfinance institution reach its goal of attaining 150,000 customers by 2019.

Since its inception in 2015, DAWN focuses on providing high-quality financial services to improve businesses and agricultural activities in the country, focusing on group lending for low-income female micro-entrepreneurs.

As of March 2017, DAWN has over 85,000 clients.

DAWN was born as a program of Save the Children and its largest shareholder and operating partner is Accion, a global nonprofit and financial inclusion organization headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Other shareholders include FMO, the Dutch Development Bank, Triodos Investment Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Triodos Bank, and Save the Children.

In 2016, OPIC disbursed a $250 million loan facility to the Apollo Towers Myanmar Limited.

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