More than 8,000 formal businesses have received 895 million Br in the form of soft loans as part of the Mastercard Foundation's Micro & Small Enterprises COVID-19 Resilience Facility. Awash and Dashen banks served as disbursement institutions for the project, which aims to circumvent the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on small businesses. It was kicked off last year in collaboration with the Jobs Creation Commission and First Consult. In addition, 2,000 informal businesses, 80pc of which are owned by women, have been provided with a total of 24 million Br in the form of grants. Over 300,000 jobs were lost due to the pandemic in 2020 alone, according to the Jobs Commission. Two years ago, Mastercard Foundation launched a 300 million dollars initiative, dubbed Young Africa Works in Ethiopia, that aims to create employment opportunities for the youth in partnership with the Commission.
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