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ISLAMABAD: Mobilink Bank and Hashoo Foundation (HF) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly enhance financial inclusion for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

This collaboration strives to empower MSMEs supported and trained by Hashoo Foundation, fostering their entrepreneurial journey. Mobilink Bank, through this partnership, is committed to enabling the growth and success of small businesses amidst a rapidly evolving economic landscape.

Mobilink Bank is part of the VEON group, a global digital operator that provides converged connectivity and online services across seven countries. Mobilink Bank’s flagship programme, the Women Inspirational Network (WIN), is dedicated to minimizing the gender gap in financial inclusion.

Jointly leveraging their respective capacity-building programs, Mobilink Bank and HF will host collaborative events to identify and transform potential prospects into business project plans. With a shared vision of empowering women and MSMEs, both institutions are committed to creating synergies that will ensure their growth and prosperity.

Ghazanfar Azzam, President and CEO Mobilink Bank, and Ayesha Khan, CEO HF and Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) at Hashoo Group signed the agreement in the presence of senior officials from both organisations.

With a specific focus on fostering an inclusive banking ecosystem, this partnership harnesses the potential of digital onboarding processes and grants entrepreneurs access to a diverse range of essential financial products and solutions. As part of the agreement, female beneficiaries of HF will also gain access to the Bank’s Bint-e-Hawwa product.

Sharing his thoughts at the signing ceremony, Ghazanfar Azzam, President and CEO Mobilink Bank said: “Mobilink Bank's partnership with HF is a powerful catalyst for change, as it fuels the growth of women-led SMEs and micro enterprises, creating a ripple effect of empowerment, prosperity and a more equitable financial landscape.

Through the provision of customized capacity-building initiatives and avenues for networking, we actively support the advancement of these enterprises, narrowing the gender gap and constructing an inclusive economy that yields benefits for all individuals.”

Ayesha Khan shared how Hashoo Foundation has positively impacted the lives of three million people through its signature programmes like Entrepreneurship Training Hub and Incubation Center (ETHIC) which received multiple awards including the International Forum Social Impact Prize, BBC Global Challenge Award, and the Clinton Global Initiatives Award, for empowering women through various value chain approaches.

An innovative action research initiative was training women entrepreneurs for waste-to-money conversion in the Sustainable Methods and Resilient Technologies (SMaRT) village project. In the past year, HF empowered over 12,000 women and men through such collaborations and various partnerships.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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