"CONTRIBUTIONS OF INHLANYELO FUND MICROCREDIT TO RURAL "
CONTRIBUTIONS OF INHLANYELO FUND MICROCREDIT TO RURAL MICROENTERPRISES IN SWAZILAND M. B. Masuku1* and H. Motsa1 ABSTRACT Poverty remains the country’s greatest challenge and is viewed as the main source of the country’s development challenges. Microenterprises play an important role in employment generation, poverty alleviation, and economic empowerment. They also provide potential opportunities for economic benefits to developing countries, such as Swaziland. These potential benefits, are often not realised due to a number of factors, such as the size of small- and medium-size enterprises and lack of credit. This study investigated the contribution of Inhlanyelo Fund microcredit on the economic development of the microenterprises in Swaziland. Using a stratified random sampling method, personal interviews were conducted on a sample of 99 entrepreneurs. The results revealed that, by accessing credit from Inhlanyelo Fund, the entrepreneurs’ income improved by E17,875.51(57%) in Year 1, E4,601.15 (15%) in Year 2 and E9,052.24 (29%) in year 3. The value of assets improved by E3,900.00 to E5,992.86. It is concluded that Inhlanyelo Fund made a significant improvement to the livelihoods of the entrepreneurs through income generation and assets accumulation. It is recommended that Inhlanyelo Fund should provide a pre- and post-loan training on business management for their clients, so that they would make effective use of the loans provided. 1 Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, University of Swaziland, Private Bag Luyengo, Luyengo M205, Swaziland Email: firstname.lastname@example.org