Peru’s Client Voice research included the perspectives of 1,000 current and former microfinance clients to identify consumer protection challenges and opportunities in the country. The Smart Campaign selected Peru as the market in Latin America for the Client Voices project because of its strong consumer protection regulations, recourse mechanism, and well-functioning credit reporting system.
The top concerns that emerged for clients in Peru are prevention of over-indebtedness, transparency, and fair and respectful treatment of clients.
Between January and July 2015, Bankable Frontier Associates (BFA) and Datum International, a local research firm, conducted qualitative and quantitative research. Peruvian clients of savings and loan institutions, cooperatives, and NGOs offering group loans participated in the qualitative research. The quantitative research included 550 current clients and 450 former clients.
Peru has a favorable environment for financial services, in recent years earning the top spot in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Microscope rankings. Although a strong government consumer complaints institution (INDECOPI) exists, over-indebtedness, transparency, and fair and respectful treatment emerge as the most prevalent concerns for clients in Peru. Addressing these concerns requires a market-level approach that takes into consideration the unique role that regulators, the microfinance industry, and clients themselves each must play.