Access to Finance for Women Entrepreneurs in South Africa

Access to Finance for Women Entrepreneurs in South Africa: Challenges and Opportunities is the first research study on access to finance for women entrepreneurs in South Africa since apartheid. The study was commissioned by the South Africa Department of Trade and Industry and undertaken by IFC's Gender Entrepreneurship Market program.

For the first time in South Africa, sex disaggregated data reveals that black women are the most entrepreneurial segment of the population, yet the least likely to have access to finance—currently only 38 percent of them do have access to finance, compared to 96 percent of white women. The study also shatters the myth that women are less likely to repay their debts, revealing in fact the opposite.

At the Global Banking Alliance for Women summit, which took place in Edinburgh in November 2006, Ms. Elizabeth Tabethe, South Africa's Deputy Minister for Trade, announced that, in reaction to the study, 2007 would be the Year for Access to Finance for Women in South Africa.



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