Resources on Microfinance in Benin


Below is a list of resources, which I have compiled for my field work in Benin. Most of them are available on the internet, but I have not had the time to find and insert the link. For the most part, they can be found by Googleing the title, by searching in The Microfinance Gateway or searching at the website of the institution who published them. Most ratings are available from the Rating Fund.

Additions and comments are welcome.

This glossary of microfinance terms in English and French (PDF) is essential for anyone working with microfinance in Francophone West Africa

Bureau Cauris Conseils (2005), Etat des lieux du secteur de la microfinance au Benin, Ministere de l’Agriculture, de l’Elevage et de la Peche, Cotonou, Benin.

CGAP (2005), Country-level savings assessment – Benin, CGAP, Washington.

Well-researched report on savings. Contains also a number of findings from individual and focus group interview with MFIs and other stakeholders. Avaiable online.

Chao-Béroff, Renée; Thi Hanh Houmard Cao et al. (2000), A Comparative Analysis Of Member-Based Microfinance Institutions In East And West Africa, MicroSave, Nairobi, Kenya.

Gives a good overview on the difference coorporative finance in West and East Africa. Finds that West African COOPECS has been more progressive in their development than the East African SACCOs. Available online.

Consortium Alafia (2006), Rapport sur les Performances Financiérs et Sociales ds Instittuions de Microfinance au Bénin, Consortium Alafia, Cotonou.

Diop, Francois Pathé (1998), Contribution actuelle et potentielle des Mutuelles de santé au financement, à la fourniture et à l’accés aux soins de santé: Cas du Bénin, USAID/PHR, BIT/ACOPAM, BIT/STEP, ANMC, WSM (!), Cotonou, Benin.

The Benin part of an ambitious study with 22 cases in 6 countries covering coorporatives working with health. Not microfinance, strickly speaking, but relevant anyway. Available online.

Goldstein, Gilles and Issa Barro (1999), The role and impact of savings mobilization in West Africa: a study of the informal and intermediary financial sectors, UN Special Unit for Microfinance, UNDP, UNCDF, New York.

Unfortunately, I have only the data-part of this study done by MicroSave-Africa on informal and intermediary financial sectors. This contains readily comparable data from 1995-1999. Available online.

Honlonkou, Albert N. ; Denis H. Acclassato et al. (2006), “Determinants de la performance de remboursement dans les institutions de microfinance au Bénin” in Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, vol. 77, iss. 1, pp. 53–81.

Probably the only academic paper on microfinance in Bénin. Analyses factors contributing to reimbursement on the basis of a survey of 1000 clients. Not available online.

Houssou, Gilbert (2002), Cas de la FECECAM au Bénin: FECECAM – Benin a la Contribution de la Microfinance dans le Financement de l’Agriculture Familiale, FECECAM, Presentation given in Dakar, place unknown.

Case presentation of FECECAM. Avaiable online.

IFAD (2000), Cooperation among the government, IFAD and NGOs. Case Study: The NGO SYFIPRO the PAGER and PROMIC projects, IFAD, Rome.

Lolila-Ramin, Zahia (2005), Regulation and Supervision of MFIs in the West African Monetary Union:
How the PARMEC law impedes access to finance for SMEs and the poor, IRIS Center, College Park, Maryland.

A very thorough resumé of the PARMEC law and its implications. Available online.

MAIN (2000), MAIN Seminar, The levers of financial sustainability. How can we gain in order to serve on the long term? A Case study, FECECAM-BENIN, Antananarivo.

Great FECECAM case study. Available online.

MicroRate (2004), PADME – Benin, Microrate, Arlington, USA.

Ministere des Finances et de l’Economie (2006), Document de Politique pour le Developpement de la Microfinance au Benin, Gouvernement de Benin, Cotonou, Benin.

The microfinance policy of the Kerekou government (2006).

The policy document of microfinance in Benin. Apparently, a new law should be ready as of October 1. 2006. Available from Cellule de Microfinance, Cotonou.

Ouattara, Korotoumou (2003), Microfinance Regulation in Benin: Implications of the PARMEC Law for Development and Performance of the Industry (PDF), World Bank, African Region Working Paper Series No. 50, Washington.

Consequences of the BCEAO law from the perspective of the three biggest MFIs in Benin. As opposed to the CGAP 2005-study, Ouattara finds regulation to be an obstacle for development of the sector. Very cited. Available online.

Planet Rating (2003), CNACFB – Benin, Microfinance Rating, Planet Rating, Saint Denis, France.

Planet Rating (2003), Finadev SA – Bénin, Planet Rating,, Saint-Ouen.

Planet Rating (2003), PAPME – Benin, Microfinance Rating, Planet Rating, Saint Denis, France.

Planet Rating (2003), Vital Finance – Benin, Microfinance rating, Planet Rating, Saint Denise, France.

Planet Rating (2005), RENACA/CEPAM – Benin, Microfinance Rating, Planet Rating, Saint Denis, France.

World Bank; Leila Webster et al. (1996), Informal Sector and Microfinance Institutions in West Africa, World Bank, Washington.

This title is the only one on the list, which I do not have. If anyone comes across it electronically, please let me know.

Two page introduction


I compiled some numbers and made a two page introduction to some of the issues in my thesis. Find it in this introduction to my thesis topic.

Starting the thesis writing


I have only just started thinking about the thesis, so there are a lot of unknows still.

Right now I am working on a two-stage approach

In the first stage, I will look at some quantitative data on microfinance institutions in order to arrive at factors which affect the performance or delivery of microfinance. These factors can be for example

– the degree of ethnic homogeneity society,
– the regulatory environment
– the organizational setup: NGO, commercial bank or in-between
– the level of corruption
– the region

I am currently working with data from CGAP’s report on microfinance from 2003 plus data from and

In the second stage, I will look more closely at one of the factors through some case-studies of MFIs. In this stage, I will use some theory from political science, probably on policy implementation.

Comment and suggestions are welcome!