Project profile — Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA)


The African Guarantee Fund for Small and Medium Enterprises Ltd. (62003)
2021-03-31 - 2031-03-31
Global Affairs Canada
MFM Global Issues & Dev.Branch

Country / region 

• Africa, regional (100.00%)


• Financial policy and administrative management:
Financial policy and administrative management (24010) (5.00%)
Formal sector financial intermediaries (24030) (5.00%)
Education/training in banking and financial services (24081) (20.00%)
• Industry: Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development (32130) (70.00%)

Policy marker 

• Gender equality (significant objective)
• Environmental sustainability (cross-cutting) (not targeted)
• Participatory development and good governance (not targeted)
• Trade development (not targeted)
• Biodiversity (not targeted)
• Climate change mitigation (not targeted)
• Climate Change Adaptation (not targeted)
• Urban issues (not targeted)
• Desertification (not targeted)
• Children's issues (not targeted)
• Disaster Risk Reduction(DRR) (not targeted)
• Youth Issues (not targeted)
• Indigenous Issues (not targeted)
• Disability (not targeted)
• Nutrition (not targeted)
• ICT as a tool for development (not targeted)


This project aims to enhance African women entrepreneurs access to finance by providing financial guarantees issued by the African Guarantee Fund to African financial institutions. The initiative promotes a shift toward a gender-sensitive approach in the lending decision-making processes of African financial institutions. Project activities include: (1) providing tailored financial services to African women entrepreneurs (2) strengthening gender-based analysis of participating African financial institutions; and (3) enhancing the capacity of African financial institutions and Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to shift the lending culture toward gender-sensitive opportunities.

Expected results 

The expected outcomes of the project include: (1) increased financial productivity and growth of women-owned or led SMEs in Africa; (2) Increased access to and control over financial resources and services by women-owned or led SMEs; and (3) Improved product and service offerings by financial institutions for women-owned/led SMEs.

Results achieved 

Results achieved as of December 2022 include: (1) made $105 million worth of new guarantees to support women-led small and medium enterprises in Africa; (2) women-owned or led small and medium-sized enterprises were able to access $98 million worth of new loans; and enabled 5,000 WSMEs to access guarantee loans ranging from $3,000 to $1,500,000

Budget and spending 

Original budget $0
Planned disbursement $0
Country percentages by sector
Type of finance Aid grant excluding debt reorganisation
Collaboration type Bilateral
Type of aid Project-type interventions
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