Blog

Browse recent blogs of interest to the Marketlinks community. Use the search box or the filters on the left-hand side to refine the listing of blogs by keyword, topic, and/or region/country.

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Unlocking Capital for Women Entrepreneurs Can Improve Livelihoods In Developing Countries: A Look at Kenya

September 1, 2021
Jane Wangige is a rice farmer in Kirinyaga County who has made money and improved her family’s livelihood from her rice farm. Her business prospered due to her membership in Mwea Rice Growers Multipurpose Co-operative Society (MRGM). MRGM is a farmer’s cooperative society that has accessed financing from USAID’s Kenya Investment Mechanism (KIM)—or specifically, a KIM partner financial institution, Co-operative Bank of Kenya.

How to ensure that emerging digital regulations enable developing countries’ trade and ecommerce?

August 2, 2021
By Kati Suominen, Founder and CEO, Nextrade Group and Techical Director, eTrade Alliance Ecommerce – the sale and purchase of goods and services online – is booming in developing countries and their export markets, opening new opportunities for developing country micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to grow their sales, export, diversify their markets, and create new jobs.

Removing the Tampon Tax in Ethiopia

June 22, 2021
This post was originally published on the Global Waters website and written by Lisa Schechtman, Senior Policy and Partnerships Advisor, USAID Center for Water Security, Sanitation and Hygiene; and Kathrin Tegenfeldt, Climate and WASH Advisor, Economic Growth and Transformation Office, USAID/Ethiopia.

Kenyan Coconut Enterprise Tries Out New Recipe: Gender Equity

June 10, 2021
By Carolanne Chanik, INVEST Communications Coordinator About an hour drive outside of the port city of Mombasa lies the coastal town of Ukunda, a modest road stop on the way to Kenya’s Diani Beach. On the outskirts of Ukunda are a smattering of general stores and auto repair shops to serve motorists and day travelers, and a coconut processing plant owned by Kentaste Products Limited.

Tanzania Looks to Blended Finance Solution for Hospital Network Modernization

June 9, 2021
By Desmond Dodd, INVEST Communications When Tanzania’s government recently began reducing funding, medical supplies, and staff available to faith-based hospitals, Peter Maduki quickly understood the stakes involved for his members. “Some of our hospitals will be at a high risk of closing,” said Maduki, the Executive Director of the Christian Social Services Commission (CSSC), a national ecumenical organization that facilitates health services through member churches.

Systems Theory through a Gender Lens

June 1, 2021
While the gender gap represents $28 trillion that could be added to global GDP by 2025, the pipeline of potential investments remains elusive for many funds. This is due to a range of factors including unconscious bias, a rigged system, lack of access to female networks, and lack of women in decision-making roles. These existing systemic issues are further exacerbated by COVID-19 and the uneven burden placed on women during the pandemic.

Cash Transfers and Economic Resilience

June 1, 2021
With pandemic lockdowns crippling labor demand and supply around the world, government interest in social protection and labor market programs in general, and cash transfers in particular, has increased dramatically.

Supporting an Environmentally Friendly Economy For a Healthy Amazon Basin

May 28, 2021
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) recently released the Amazon Vision 2020 Report describing its achievements in biodiversity and sustainable landscape initiatives across Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Guyana, and Suriname. As part of this progress update, the report focuses on the Agency’s work to promote a more sustainable and innovative development model that supports Amazonian entrepreneurs with a vision for a sustainable local economy.

The ENGIE Acquisition: With USAID Support, an Off-Grid Solar Fenix Rises

May 13, 2021
FROM SILICON VALLEY STARTUP TO LANDMARK ACQUISITION Access to technology is an essential component to development, especially in Africa. Africans use cheap mobile phones to pay their bills, conduct small business, and make calls anywhere and everywhere. However, even a small mobile phone is not useful if power is not available to charge it. Eighty percent of African households lack electric power, which limits opportunities to access information and mobile money, as well as business and educational opportunities. 

ECommerce Accelerates Opportunities for Women-led MSMES

March 29, 2021
Engagement in international trade provides many benefits for MSMEs including diversifying and expanding their market base, driving revenue growth and job creation, and increasing competitiveness. For these reasons intentional trade has been recognized as a powerful tool for creating economic opportunity and reducing poverty in developing economies.

Promoting Equity and Inclusion in The Unequal Marketplace

March 25, 2021
Disasters adversely affect local economies, making it hard for microenterprises to remain open and damaging critical assets and infrastructure.  USAID’s humanitarian economic recovery assistance seeks to help people recover their livelihoods and be able to provide for their own needs. The market systems these people work in, though, are often deeply inequitable.