Despite the launch of Papua New Guinea’s (PNG) First National Financial Inclusion and Financial Literacy Strategy in 2014-2015, the progress in achieving financial inclusion has been slow and limited. There is a significant need for improvement, especially in providing equal opportunities for women and ensuring inclusivity in the strategy’s implementation.
In May 2022, United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched the Rapid Finance Facility (RFF) project in PNG. The RFF Project was designed to provide support to women entrepreneurs by offering digital and financial services. The project aimed to enhance financial inclusion and address the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women. By empowering women with digital tools and access to financial services, the project sought to create opportunities for economic growth and resilience in the face of challenging circumstances. The project took a comprehensive approach to address the key barriers women entrepreneurs face in the formal and informal business sectors.
The RFF project aimed to enhance women-led MSMEs’ capacities, enabling them to effectively utilize digital tools and digital financial services through capacity-building training. The project also prioritized access to a range of financial services for women entrepreneurs to actively participate in the digital economy. The RFF project targeted informal businesses in Lae and Port Moresby, which are crucial business hubs in Papua New Guinea.