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Tameer Foundation hosts signing ceremony to commemorate Citigroup Foundation grant

Karachi. A grant of PKR 3 million (US$50,000) to support financial literacy programmes was celebrated at a joint signing ceremony held by Citi Pakistan and Tameer Microfinance Bank April 2 2007. The grant, from the Citigroup Foundation, will support Tameer Foundation’s Community Education & Outreach programme.

Established in 2006, under the same banner as the Tameer Microfinance Bank, the Tameer Foundation’s primary goal is spread financial literacy amongst potential microfinance clients. The Foundation aims to correct the lack of awareness of the existence and availability of financial services amongst the ‘unbanked’ classes through nation-wide training initiatives.

The signing ceremony was held at Tameer Bank’s Karachi offices in the presence of CEO Nadeem Husain, Group Executive Director Shahid Mustafa from Tameer, while Citi was represented by Francesco Vanni d’Archirafi CEO Global Transaction Services for Europe Middle East & Africa, and Pakistan Country Officer & MD Zubyr Soomro amongst others.

Nadeem Hussain CEO Tameer Bank and President of Tameer Foundation said “It has been demonstrated that the absence of financial literacy can result in poor or no financial choices that can be a hurdle to the development of employment and financial opportunity in a community. Tameer intends to create awareness of both the existence and benefits of financial services for the poor. We appreciate Citigroup’s support of this effort and look forward to

having a long and productive association with them.”

Francesco Vanni d’Archirafi said “Citigroup is committed to giving back to the communities where it operates and in this case is proud to be associated with and to support a programme that seeks to enhance learning levels amongst the underprivileged.”

Zubyr Soomro. Pakistan Country Officer & MD said “We understand the integral role training will play in our microfinance sector’s overall growth and are delight to provide resources to help address this requirement”.

Citigroup has also recently concluded its annual Mic roentrepreneurship Awards 2006 programme whereby a total of 40 microentrepreneurs and loan officers were awarded US$34,000 in prize money. It is also in the process of arranging a ‘financial education for the poor’ programme in collaboration with Microfinance Opportunities and Freedom from Hunger in early April this year.

Citibank N.A Pakistan has also recently announced the first-ever commercial funding transaction for Kashf Foundation. This is in addition to its equity contributions to the Government-owned Khushhali bank, the largest microfinance bank in Pakistan and a 4 year grant to the First Microfinance Bank.

In the last five years alone, the Citigroup Foundation has awarded nearly $20 million in grants to 145 microfinance partners in more than 50 countries. The Citigroup Foundation's grants are awarded primarily in three areas: Financial Education, Educating the Next Generation, and Building Communities and Entrepreneurs.

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