UNCDF has been present in Benin since 1981, intervening over the past three decades with projects aimed at reinforcing the decentralization process, strengthening national capacities to support local economic development, and improving food security.
Today, UNCDF offers catalytic finance models that unlock public and private resources in “last mile” environments, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.
In Benin UNCDF is currently implementing MicroLead, a global initiative that aims to develop, pilot and scale deposit services for low income, rural populations, particularly women. Benin is one of eight countries where UNCDF implements its Mobile Money for the Poor (MM4P) programme, supporting and cooperating with banks, mobile network operators and regulators to help reach millions of currently unbanked residents.
UNCDF is also implementing its Local Climate Adaptive Living Facility (LoCAL) programme, enabling local governments to cope with the increased costs of building resilience to climate change and natural disasters. By using targeted seed capital investments and technical support to attract private resources, such as domestic banks, the Local Finance Initiative (LFI) programme bridges a significant gap between local infrastructure needs and available funds. UNCDF’s Finance for Food (F4F) initiative invests in infrastructure for improving food security in Benin, and helps the government to make food security a central part of local planning and budgets.