One day people may wonder how anyone thought that lending money at high interest rates would empower the poor. Yet since the 1980s, the small, high-interest loans that were initially known as microcredit, have been a staple of global development agencies’ toolkits. The non-profit microfinance sector commercialised and became today’s global financial inclusion industry, which specialises in channelling the money of the have-much’s to the have-not’s. For having the idea, in 2006, Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Bangladesh’s Grameen Bank, won the Nobel Peace Prize – the only banker to have ever done so.
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