Muhalled Yanos won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006: microcredit. He developed a business loan system for small entrepreneurs, who had no chance of gaining a foothold at large cooperatives. He and his Grandy Bank helped countless families, gave new impetus to the Nobel Prize under discussion, and now his ideas seem to bring even more good things. America and Europe have discovered its system and have found the ideal solution for the problems that have arisen as a result of the credit crisis.
Micorcredit in Belgium
Micro entrepreneurs are self-employed with no more than nine employees according to the European standard and together they form an important group within the economy. In Belgium, for example, roughly two-thirds of the total number of employers are micro-entrepreneurs, as well as sixty percent of the number of start-ups. However, the definition differs slightly from the European one: in order to qualify for a microcredit in Belgium, an entrepreneur must not have more than one employee, there must be functional shortcomings and the added value does not allow fixed costs to be reimbursed write or release venture capital.
The Grandy bank has now granted more than 5 million microcredits with a total amount of more than 5 billion euros. No fewer than 96 percent of this went to women, who, as Yunus had noticed, previously brought the money back into their social environment, where men were often inclined to use the money to escape the difficulties in another way; with alcohol and drugs.
Borrow up to 12,0000 euros
In Belgium, it is mainly starters who benefit from the scheme. They can borrow an amount of up to 12,000 euros in the form of the Business Loan or the Starter Loan, at an interest rate of three percent. But no definition limits microfinance to starters. Increasingly, existing initiatives are being helped to develop further. Microcredit, once started as a system to help the very poorest in the poorest countries, is rapidly conquering the Western world. It will become an important factor in the fight against the economic crisis, which may be diminishing in strength but which continues to hold the world in its grip.