Women’s empowerment

Much research exists showing how economic development and poverty reduction are achieved faster, and are more stable when investment is made in women’s empowerment

Women are real catalysts in a country’s progress, because of their particular focus on the family, on which they spend their available resources, improving their standards of education, nutrition and health, which contributes to the development of human capital, sustainable and inclusive growth and, finally, to poverty reduction.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, despite the distance covered in the last few decades, huge economic and poverty gaps remain that become wider with greater vulnerability. Labor opportunities are scarce in the region and the extensive time that women spend on unpaid work limits their options for generating income. This leads to situations in which many of them depend financially on a third party, work in the informal economy or decide to start a small, self-employed business for which financial inclusion is critical. Nevertheless, according to Findex 2014, 52% of women in the region do not have a bank account. This greater financial restriction means that their possibilities to expand their businesses and make progress are limited.

52% of women in the region do not have a bank account

BBVAMF is aware of this reality so, in alignment with its mission, it pays special attention to women entrepreneurs. Driving their financial independence has been, and continues to be, a very important function of all the institutions in the BBVAMF Group.

The Foundation seeks to position itself as an agent of change that facilitates women’s economic empowerment through financial inclusion, one of the targets within the United Nations’ SDG nº 5, Gender Equality. To work towards this, BBVAMF makes it easier for women to access financial products and services that are adapted to their needs, which it supports with financial education, technical training and access to networks. BBVAMF takes an active part in the United Nations’ principal forums on women’s empowerment (Commission on the Status of Women and the Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment) and has signed a memorandum of understanding with UN Women.