A memorandum of understanding between NCBA CLUSA and the Malawi Union of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (MUSCCO) is expected to expand access to agribusiness financing and grow smallholder farmer livelihoods in rural Malawi.
Signed March 14 by NCBA CLUSA President and CEO Mike Beall and MUSCCO CEO Sylvester Kadzola, the agreement is meant to further develop the missions of both organizations.
“Much of the work being done in these communities depends on reliable financial services,” Beall said after the signing. “This agreement will provide a strong foundation on which vulnerable populations can build their future.”
According to the agreement, NCBA CLUSA will identify and mobilize potential farmer associations producing enough agricultural commodities for bulk sales, assess the needs of each farmer association and other value chain partners for access to financial services, link farmer associations and other value chain partners with MUSCCO and collaborate with MUSCCO to develop products and services tailored to specific associations or value chain partners.
Meanwhile, MUSCCO will participate in financial needs assessment, meet with NCBA CLUSA partners to explain products and services offered and collaborate with NCBA CLUSA and its local partners to design and pilot financial products and services uniquely developed to benefit vulnerable rural populations.
Headquartered in Lilongwe, Malawi, MUSCCO is a national member-based organization of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) operating across Malawi and offering savings, loans, insurance and financial literacy services.
The MOU complements NCBA CLUSA’s current development work in Malawi, where it is working to build resilience among vulnerable populations in three of the most food-insecure, chronically malnourished and disaster-prone districts of Southern Malawi.
The MOU is in place through December 31, 2015, and subject to renewal upon the agreement of both organizations.