A Community Mela promoting the use of solar-energy products was conducted by CEIP Microfinance Institute, in collaboration with International Finance Corporation (IFC), on Thursday 29th March 2018, in Lahore. The fair brought to close IFC’s ‘Lighting Pakistan’ campaign, which was being implemented by CEIP in Punjab, under which over 25,000 households have been provided access to subsidized solar products for use at home and workplaces. “Our female borrowers faced difficulty in expanding their businesses due to power outages”, said the CEO, Begum Shaista Jan. She said that “providing energy solutions to women[-led businesses] can utilize the untapped potential of Pakistan’s economy and enhance GDP growth”.
Shifting focus towards alternative energy to support small businesses, the government is facilitating microfinance sector to engage urban and rural women in enterprise development programs, including the Prime Minister’s Interest Free Loan Scheme, which CEIP is implementing in D.G. Khan.