Updated Sep 05, 2019

Expanding Access to Finance through Micro-Equity

Part of J-PAL Global

Increasing Uptake of Microcredit Products in Muslim-Majority Countries

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Focus Areas:

Economic Growth and Trade

Economic Growth and TradeSEE LESS

Implemented In:



Country Implemented In
Verified Funding


Partly because of a common perception among religious Muslims that debt is prohibited under Islamic law, financial inclusion rates remain much lower in Muslim-majority countries than in non-Muslim majority countries.



This will help J-PAL design a microequity product that could increase financial access for Muslims who avoid conventional debt for religious reasons, and potentially appeal to customers beyond the Muslim world who are simply debt averse. Such a product could be scaled up across Egypt through the country’s large microfinance federation; it could also be scaled up in other Muslim-majority countries through J-PAL MENA’s strategic partnership with the Islamic Development Bank. In addition, the study will help shed light on ongoing efforts to understand when and why microcredit works and doesn’t work in general.

Innovation Description

With support from DIV, J-PAL MENA is partnering with a large Egyptian microfinance institution and experimenting by offering microcredit products such as small-scale, in-kind loans to about 1500 low-income goat farmers that may be more appealing than traditional microfinance arrangements.


Jul 2019
Funds RaisedVERIFIED
TITLEExpanding Access to Finance through Micro-Equity
Economic Growth and Trade
Implemented InEgypt
Date Unknown
New Country Implemented In