Digitization of SFACLs and Expansion of Access to Finance in Karnali Province of Nepal
(A partnership between UKaid Sakchyam and Sana Kisan Bikash Bank Ltd.)
Small Farmer Agriculture Cooperative Limited (SFACLs) is a platform for small holder farmers to avail agriculture credit and other technical support. Though there are 700 plus SFACLs throughout the country, there are only 44 SFACLs in the Karnali region. To make the matters worse, these SFACLs are not functioning as per the expectation. To have a focused approach, and to make these SFACLs well performing, there is a need to invest in capacitating the existing SFACLs and also establish new ones to have a critical mass.
The UKaid Sakchyam Access to Finance Programme (Sakchyam) is helping Sana Kisan Bikash Bank Limited (SKBBL) to expand its reach in Karnali Province and digitize SFACLs. With the technical and financial support of project, SKBBL will establish a branch in Surkhet and replicate 40 new SFACLs in Karnali. The branch office will capacitate SFACLs and SKBBL will also capacitate 44 existing SFACLs so that they are better able to offer quality financial services. In addition, SKBBL intends to digitize 250 SFACLs throughout the Nepal, out of 700 plus SFACLs, in the project period. The digitization will allow these SFACLs to automate its financial transaction and bring efficiency. SKBBL will also design financial literacy content which SFACLs will offer to their existing and potential members.
With this partnership, which was formally launched in January 2019, it is expected that SFACLs will be able to reach 24,800 members and capacitate existing low performing cooperatives. Digitization of the SFACLs will also be crucial to capacitate the cooperative and to bring efficiency. Within the project period, SKBBL aims to:
- Establish a branch in Surkhet to look after the SFACLs of Karnali province (This branch was launched in January 2019)
- Establish 40 new SFACL through its SFACL replication model
- Upgrade the existing software of SFACLs
- Digitize 250 SFACLs
- Reach 24,800 beneficiaries and unlock NPR 1.13 billion of loan
As of March 2019, Sana Kisan has:
- Opened 1 new physical branch
- Reached 990 customers in total
- Disbursed over NPR 365 million in loans
- Collected NPR 172.7 million in deposits