Singapore, October 28, 2009—
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Standard Chartered Bank are hosting a global summit to discuss innovative ways to increase access to finance for women entrepreneurs, with the global financial crisis at the heart of conversations.
Summit of the Global Banking Alliance for Women is being held in Singapore this year, from October 28 through 30. Participants and GBA’s member banks operating in developed and emerging markets will discuss the effect of the crisis on women entrepreneurs and the important role that women in banking can play in rebuilding confidence and trust in the banking sector.
The summit will tackle other topics, including better understanding the needs of women, diversity and inclusion, and transitioning from microfinance lending to small and medium enterprise lending. It also will present the “Most Innovative Bank of the Year Award” to the GBA member that found the most creative way to reach women entrepreneurs in 2009.
“If limited access to finance has traditionally been a barrier to growth for women-owned businesses, then the impact of the financial crisis on them cannot be understated,” said Zouera Youssoufou, Program Manager, IFC Gender Program. “Now more than ever, there is a clear need to support institutions that are committed to providing financial services for women entrepreneurs.”
Larke Riemer, Chair of the Global Banking Alliance for Women, said, “By sharing best practices, the GBA will be instrumental in boosting women’s economic empowerment around the world.” Riemer also heads the Women’s Market, Westpac Australia.
Joanna Fielding, Chief Financial Officer for Standard Chartered Bank China, said, “We are delighted to host the Global Banking Alliance for Women Summit in Singapore this year, marking the first time the event has been held in Asia. Standard Chartered Bank has a deep-rooted commitment to supporting women’s economic empowerment.”
Since 2005, IFC has been the Global Banking Alliance’s main sponsor and supporter. For more information on IFC’s work with women entrepreneurs globally, visit
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $14.5 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit