Programme d'Appui à la Stratégie Nationale de Microfinance (Madagascar)

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2008-2009, UNCDF
Evaluation Type:
Project
Planned End Date:
04/2009
Completion Date:
01/2009
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
99,143

Share

Document Type Language Size Status Downloads
Download document BIFSA RFP TOR - FINAL.doc tor English 756.50 KB Posted 996
Download document MDG_PASNMF_0810_MIDTERM_FR.doc report English 851.00 KB Posted 5642
Title Programme d'Appui à la Stratégie Nationale de Microfinance (Madagascar)
Atlas Project Number:
Evaluation Plan: 2008-2009, UNCDF
Evaluation Type: Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 01/2009
Planned End Date: 04/2009
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Poverty and MDG
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
Evaluation Budget(US $): 99,143
Source of Funding:
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Nathalie Assouline Team Leader
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: GLOBAL
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 ? Overall comments from the IRIS evaluation team: The strategic choice, made by UNDCF in 2004, to broaden its focus from microfinance to inclusive finance was appropriate and in line with current trends in improving financial access for the poor and excluded in LDCs. UNCDF has to be especially congratulated on being one of the few development donors to work on building inclusive financial sectors in the least developed countries, and the post-conflict countries, in Africa. There are design and implementation issues to be resolved, but overall the strategic change in focus is appropriate. The changes that UNCDF embarked upon in 2004, were timely but, nonetheless, were probably ambitious given the enormous challenges in ever-changing financial sector environments in a large number of countries on a continent known for its changing contexts. While UNCDF has succeeded in many aspects, the results of this evaluation indicate that UNCDF should now focus in designing more context-specific programmes where UNCDF has a clear comparative advantage and can create additionality in reaching vulnerable populations without crowding out the private sector. In doing so, pragmatic and flexible approaches are called for to work effectively with the stake holders recognizing and utilizing their strengths. It is now imperative that UNCDF assess the opportunity costs of amounts of investments it makes in one country versus another, and within countries assess the most important initiatives and if funds are most efficiently allocated among these alternatives. UNCDF is aware of many of the concerns raised in this evaluation regarding capacity building, new product development and monitoring indicators, and is taking action since 2008 to rectify many of the problems. For example, fine tuning monitoring indicators, strengthening staff skills by sending them to training programs, initiating talks with FSPs piloting new products such as savings and insurance, conducting SWOT analysis during staff retreats to identify partners to work with and to rectify the weaknesses are concrete steps taken to improve the programme. Future evaluations of BIFSA should consider assessing the effectiveness of these activities in terms of results. The recommendations discussed below, based on our findings from the evaluation of BIFSA I, are intended for UNCDF to improve its current implementation of BIFSA II.
2 Ensure that the Building Inclusive Financial Sectors (BIFSA) investments (grants, loans, equity) have a goal of additionality, i.e. that they provide a source of funding for projects that contribute to the BIFSA programme?s goal of building inclusive financial sectors more effectively.
3 Clarify the facilitation role for UNCDF with respect to building inclusive financial sectors in BIFSA countries.
4 Improve FIPA staff?s ability to assess the outcomes and impact of BIFSA country projects on the inclusive financial sector.
5 Improve UNCDF BIFSA programme fundraising to ensure funding availability for new BIFSA programmes.
6 Improve UNCDF BIFSA?s internal capacity.
7 Improve the process for the Investment Committee
1. Recommendation: ? Overall comments from the IRIS evaluation team: The strategic choice, made by UNDCF in 2004, to broaden its focus from microfinance to inclusive finance was appropriate and in line with current trends in improving financial access for the poor and excluded in LDCs. UNCDF has to be especially congratulated on being one of the few development donors to work on building inclusive financial sectors in the least developed countries, and the post-conflict countries, in Africa. There are design and implementation issues to be resolved, but overall the strategic change in focus is appropriate. The changes that UNCDF embarked upon in 2004, were timely but, nonetheless, were probably ambitious given the enormous challenges in ever-changing financial sector environments in a large number of countries on a continent known for its changing contexts. While UNCDF has succeeded in many aspects, the results of this evaluation indicate that UNCDF should now focus in designing more context-specific programmes where UNCDF has a clear comparative advantage and can create additionality in reaching vulnerable populations without crowding out the private sector. In doing so, pragmatic and flexible approaches are called for to work effectively with the stake holders recognizing and utilizing their strengths. It is now imperative that UNCDF assess the opportunity costs of amounts of investments it makes in one country versus another, and within countries assess the most important initiatives and if funds are most efficiently allocated among these alternatives. UNCDF is aware of many of the concerns raised in this evaluation regarding capacity building, new product development and monitoring indicators, and is taking action since 2008 to rectify many of the problems. For example, fine tuning monitoring indicators, strengthening staff skills by sending them to training programs, initiating talks with FSPs piloting new products such as savings and insurance, conducting SWOT analysis during staff retreats to identify partners to work with and to rectify the weaknesses are concrete steps taken to improve the programme. Future evaluations of BIFSA should consider assessing the effectiveness of these activities in terms of results. The recommendations discussed below, based on our findings from the evaluation of BIFSA I, are intended for UNCDF to improve its current implementation of BIFSA II.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Key Actions:

2. Recommendation: Ensure that the Building Inclusive Financial Sectors (BIFSA) investments (grants, loans, equity) have a goal of additionality, i.e. that they provide a source of funding for projects that contribute to the BIFSA programme?s goal of building inclusive financial sectors more effectively.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: The concept of ?additonality? will be central to investment decisions under BIFSA II. As part of its KM strategy, FIPA will recruit a consultant / facilitator to document our in-house and select external stakeholders? views / experience with the concept of additionality (Jan/April 2010). On this basis, a Guidance Note will be prepared on this issue, including what criteria will be used to assess whether and how UNCDF is actually bringing additionality in its operations/investments. As part of this exercise, special attention will also be taken to ensure that UNCDF funding is not crowding out investments from the private sector. Timeline: (i) documenting in-house and peers? views on Additionality: January/April 2010; (ii) Finalize on this basis the Guidance Note on Additionality: May 2010.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Develop a guidance note on: additionality criteria ? Guidance notes should focus on providing support to smaller Financial Service Providers (FSPs) with growth potential, rural FSPs, FSPs who are developing new product lines that reach new markets, FSPs who are downscaling, and so on; FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Document in-house and selected peers? views / experience on the issue of additionality . On this basis, Guidance Note on additonality (and related criteria) ready by May 2010. Specific criteria will look at the following dimensions, among others: use of smart grant to trigger innovation, leverage, impact on rural outreach, support to product diversification, use of ICT etc?.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, and the KM Consultant 2010/05 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.Followed by a newly developed Diagnostic tool called MAP.
2. Develop a guidance note on appropriate use of grants, loans and equity for project staff in-country, co-donors, and investment committee members; FIPA Management Response to the proposed action The above note on additionality will also include an analysis of appropriate use of grant and loans
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, and the KM Consultant 2010/05 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.Followed by a newly developed Diagnostic tool called MAP.
3. Develop a guidance note on exclusions, i.e. types of projects that will not be funded by UNCDF (which could include indicators such as risk, % of UNCDF funding to all external funding, % women, poor, and/or rural clients, % of loans under national GDP, current access to capital markets, and so on); FIPA Management Response to the proposed action One of UNCDF key strengths is its flexibility. Setting ?exclusions? would diminish this flexibility. The note on additionality above will ensure that we apply our funding in an appropriate way.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA 2008/01 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.Followed by a newly developed Diagnostic tool called MAP.
4. Develop a systematic way of monitoring additionality, with indicators and targets for each country. This could be a checklist or table within country quarterly and annual progress reports to the regional offices: FIPA Management Response to the proposed action An assessment of UNCDF investment?s additionality will be part of BIFSA?S semi-annual and annual reporting on its investment portfolio.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
Regional Technical Advisers, 2010/06 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.Followed by a newly developed Diagnostic tool called MAP.
5. Disseminate guidance notes and monitoring table to Country Technical Advisors (CTAs) Regional Technical Advisors (RTAs), and Portfolio Technical Managers (PTMs) and all other relevant staff in the region. Ensure that staff understand the guidance notes. Ensure, through supervision visits and review of quarterly and annual progress reports that the guidance notes are being followed. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Guidance notes and proposed monitoring table will be shared with the BIFSA team in and adjusted based on feedback. From September 2010 onwards, it will be used to track UNCDF?s additionality in its investments. Application of additionality principles will also be reviewed during Supervision and technical review missions.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, and the KM Consultant 2010/06 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.Followed by a newly developed Diagnostic tool called MAP
3. Recommendation: Clarify the facilitation role for UNCDF with respect to building inclusive financial sectors in BIFSA countries.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: This recommendation mirrors one of the main recommendations from the SmartAid Index and is related to UNCDF?s strategic positioning on the three dimensions of the sector based approach to microfinance (macro, meso, and micro). FIPA management will first document as part of its KM strategy internal views / experience on UNCDF?s role as facilitator On this basis, FIPA management will develop a concept note / strategic framework (and amend its Vision and Strategy statements accordingly) to incorporate that issue. It will clarify FIPA?s strategic positioning and the actual meaning and implications of a facilitation role in building inclusive financial sectors

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Develop a strategic framework for UNCDF?s facilitation role, similar to the one found in the Evaluation Synthesis Report. (Table 1). Evaluate UNCDF?s comparative advantages and disadvantages in each category of facilitation role. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action UNCDF views / experience on its role of facilitation documented as part of FIPA?s KM . On that basis, a concept note on this issue of facilitation will be prepared by FIPA management and shared with FIPA team
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, KM Consultant 2010/05 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done; to follow up in the new Diagnostic tool (MAP)
2. Using the country diagnostic, develop a gap analysis for each BIFSA country, that includes three parameters: 1) where are the facilitation needs? 2) where does UNCDF have the comparative advantages to fill the need? 3) where does UNCDF need to partner with other actors to address the needs? FIPA Management Response to the proposed action The gap analysis table has now been introduced in all new project documents. It will be further refined, adding a more precise assessment of UNCDF?s facilitation role and comparative advantages. (on-going)
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
PTM/ CTA 2008/01 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done; to follow up in the new Diagnostic tool (MAP)
4. Develop a mechanism for capturing stakeholder feedback on UNCDF facilitation. This could be an indicator with a survey that is taken once per year, or it could happen through roundtables of stakeholders (donors, project and non-project) in the sector. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Simple mechanisms for getting stakeholders feedbacks will be tested at the country level, first in a sample of key countries (4 to 5) to test appropriate methodologies (by March 2010) and up-scaled to all programs by end of 2010 .
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Stakeholder feedback is an inherent part of MAP
3. From this information, develop a facilitation strategy for each country, with objectives, indicators and targets. Keep it simple, flexible, and achievable within the timeframe of the project. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Facilitation strategies will be developed for each country, for existing and new programs, with simple frameworks and appropriate targets. Keeping them flexible is essential to maintain their relevance. (on-going)
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
Regional Technical Advisers /PTM/ CTA 2010/09 No Longer Applicable STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: The facilitations strategies will be substituted by a new approach to programming, country diagnostic called MAP
4. Recommendation: Improve FIPA staff?s ability to assess the outcomes and impact of BIFSA country projects on the inclusive financial sector.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: FIPA will design tools and indicators to improve the assessment of the outcome and impact of its programs, as follows: (i) first by developing a framework and performance indicators for assessing more accurately the macro and meso levels of its sector-based programs, and engage in a peer review on those indicators with CGAP and other donors. (ii) second by actively promoting the agenda of ?social performance? assessment among its grantees (including on the issue of client protection). Funding will be provided to FSPs to undertake social performance rating and assessments and to disseminate client protection methods and tools through national MF associations and FSPs. Timeline: (i) New set of indicators: first draft by June 2010 and peer review of the draft by September. (ii) Promotion of social performance assessment when feasible and relevant: from January 2010 onwards.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Develop progressive indicators for the macro and meso levels that better measure outcomes and impact rather than just outputs for those BIFSA country projects that are implementing activities at these levels. Build these indicators into the project?s performance framework. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Define a general framework to assess UNCDF?s programs impact at the macro and meso levels and define indicators to that effect Test new objectives and indicators in a sample of new UNCDF projects
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, 2010/07 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: They will be part of the new diagnostics (MAP)
2. Add an objective, indicators and targets to project performance frameworks for country for TA to UNDP. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action BIFSA semi-annual and annual reporting will include a section about cooperation with UNDP, also including UNCDF?s assessment of issues that need to be addressed on UNDP?s side.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/08/23]
Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/06 Completed STATUS UPDATE AUGUST 2012: Done.
3. Put into place a mechanism for regional PTMs and country-level CTAs to report on their activities in support of UNDP country microfinance programmes. This should be part of their work plans and reporting on project activities. 4. Put into place a new mechanism for gathering feedback from staff of UNDP country programmes who have received TA from UNCDF BIFSA staff. This could be an ?end of TA? report filled out by UNDP staff, or a survey by email every six months to those countries who are receiving TA, or some other cost-effective feedback mechanism. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action As Part of the BIFSA annual report, a simple questionnaire / request for feedback will be shared with UNDP offices, in LDCs and non LDCs where UNCDF provides technical advice to UND
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/08/23]
Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/06 Completed STATUS UPDATE AUGUST 2012: Done.
5. Add an objective, indicators and targets to performance frameworks for fundraising, if this is a goal of the project/office. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Fund-raising will be strengthened from the inception stage of new projects (potential donors invited to join the sector review and formulation process) Stronger emphasis will also be put on leveraging UNCDF resources in general, (on-going)
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/08/23]
Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTA 2008/01 Completed STATUS UPDATE AUGUST 2012: Done.
6. Develop indicators or use prudential indicators used for reporting to BCEAO for on-going risk assessment for investments in FSPs and monitor the FSPs on a quarterly basis for external funds use). FIPA Management Response to the proposed action FIPA will write a briefing on indicators used for reporting to BCEAO and assess their relevance for due diligence process in FSP applications (February 2010). Performance monitoring itself will continue however to focus on the MIX market indicators, used by all donors / investors
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
West Africa Regional office 2010/03 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done.
7. Train UNCDF BIFSA staff in the use of the indicators. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action UNCDF decided at the Cape Town retreat of May 2009 to train national and regional staff to track and use performance indicators more effectively.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/08/23]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs 2012/08 Completed STATUS UPDATE AUGUST 2012: Done.
8. FSP management and staff need to attend workshops on the indicators and their use to better manage their FSPs.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/08/23]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs 2012/08 Completed STATUS UPDATE AUGUST 2012: Done.
5. Recommendation: Improve UNCDF BIFSA programme fundraising to ensure funding availability for new BIFSA programmes.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: Fund-raising and resource mobilization will be systematically strengthened as part of BIFSA II? strategy, at the country / regional and HQ levels. (timeline: from July onwards).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Clarify fundraising responsibilities at each level of BIFSA operations: country, regional, and NY offices. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action The foundation of strengthened fund-raising was adopted during the Cape Town retreat. This include (i) systematic inclusion of potential donors from inception of new programs; (ii) filling and updating funding gaps information sheets for all programs and share them with regional and HQ levels. (iii) HQs has also developed a clear mobilization strategy for thematic and sector-based programs, in close coordination with the Partnership and Communication Unit (i.e targeting Norway, Spain, AfDB, EU, the MasterCard Foundation etc?),
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done
2. Update and finalize the credit manual. Streamline the procedures and ensure that FSPs receive their funds in a timely manner. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action As per both BIFSA I evaluation and the UNCDF audit initial feedback, UNCDF is in the process of reviewing and strengthen its loan portfolio management and monitoring system
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done
Action(s) proposed by evaluation team 3. Conduct market studies with other donors to identify funding requirements and put into place a fund structure with an implicit exit plan. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action The funding gap analysis framework agreed upon at the April 2009 Cape Town includes an analysis of funding needs from FSPs (funding gap at the FSP level).
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done
4. Look into other options. This could include maintaining a more flexible investment committee for smaller capacity building grants and smaller credits to the 2nd and 3rd tiers FSPs to bring them up to commercial specifications while outsourcing medium to large amounts to a private autonomous fund with professional management that can attract both donors and private sector participants. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action Lessons learnt from UNCDF?s experiences with Investment Committees to be documented as part of FIPA KM (April 2010) Outsourcing to private autonomous funds / investors is already very much part of BIFSA?s funding strategy for more mature FSPs (on-going) Finally, UNCDF started assessing the feasibility to join multi-donor funding mechanisms, in the context of the DRC and Sierra Leone programs Phase II. FIPA is having on-going negotiations with UNCDF OLPS on these issues
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs and CTAs 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done
6. Recommendation: Improve UNCDF BIFSA?s internal capacity.
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: FIPA has developed a comprehensive training program for its staff (including BIFSA staff) for 2008 and 2009. Moreover, BIFSA II plans to strengthen BIFSA?s staff with recruiting a specialist in policy / regulatory issues, who will play the role of focal point and coordinator the discussions of policy related issues in FIPA?s programs with external sources of expertise. This person will also provide in-house training to FIPA?s staff on those issues, to increase our overall ability to understand, support and partner with those external sources of expertise in this area. Policy expert expected to be on Board by Q1 of 2010.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Develop a formal staff training program for regional and country staff in building the following skills: Ability to analyze strategic and business plans market/demand & feasibility analysis including scenario analysis and inclusive financial sector analysis with particular focus on sustainability. 2. Work with other donors to fill existing gaps in staff skills FIPA Management Response to the proposed action UNCDF, as a capital investment agency, decided to move out of developing and delivering training courses, following the re-orientation of its microfinance strategy in 2005. UNCDF rather sends its staff to external professional training courses. Targeted in-house training however will continue and expand in the area of (i) performance ratios assessment and monitoring and (ii) policy ? regulatory issues (with the new policy expert on board).
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/FIPA and Regional Technical Advisers, with input from PTMs 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done and followed up by the KM project
3. Evaluate the feasibility (costs vs benefits) of a distance training course vs. intense face-to-face training for regional managers and their staff. 4. Develop distant learning course for country staff and allocate time to staff to undergo training and obtain certification. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action UNCDF decided to move out of developing distance training courses for the reason above
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/ Regional directors 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done and followed up by the KM project
7. Recommendation: Improve the process for the Investment Committee
Management Response: [Added: 2010/01/22]

Management Response: FIPA decided during the 2009 Cape Town retreat to assess in depth its experience with investment committees. As part of its KM strategy, FIPA will recruit a consultant/facilitator to gather its staff views / experience with IC and derive from it a series of concrete recommendations / decisions aimed at improving the IC structure, operations and decision-making process in the future

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Ensure competent due diligence by an independent consultant or firm. This has the dual purpose of avoiding conflict of interest and building meso level actors FIPA Management Response to the proposed action As explained to the evaluation team, the due diligence is an essential part of the country CTA?s responsibility. There is no conflict of interest with IC decision, as long as the business planning process of the applying FSP is not directly led by the same CTA. UNCDF will ensure that this does not happen (as it did in the Liberia case highlighted by the evaluation team).
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
Regional Directors and PTM 2010/12 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done. Approaches on rating and accounting developed, disseminated
2. Review the issue of government participation on the Investment Committee. FIPA Management Response to the proposed action The issue of government?s participation to the IC has already been extensively discussed within FIPA. It will be further reviewed / assessed as part of the KM facilitated process on FIPA?s experience with IC.
[Added: 2010/01/22] [Last Updated: 2012/04/20]
HQ/ Regional Technical Advisors/ KM consultant 2010/05 Completed STATUS UPDATE APRIL 2012: Done; will be considered in the new diagnostic

Latest Evaluations

Contact us

1 UN Plaza
DC1-20th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Tel. +1 646 781 4200
Fax. +1 646 781 4213
erc.support@undp.org