FAQs

How long does it take to have a Licence?

The Act provides for 90 days after receiving the application. Incase additional information is requested for by the authority, the 90 days will be counted from the day the additional information is submitted.

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How is UMRA going to Regulate Money Lenders in the rural areas given its thin staff on ground?

  • UMRA is to work closely with the Associations and the Unions of the Money Lenders like UMOLA that is an umbrella body for the Money Lenders in Uganda to ease enforcement of policies, programs and legislation tools in that sector.
  • The fact that the law requires the authority to gazette all Tier 4 Microfinance Institutions in at least a Newspaper of wide circulation in the country, this will threaten a number of illegal and unregistered Money Lenders from illegally transacting thus regulating them.
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Is every Money lender supposed to set own interest rate?

The Tier 4 was purposely established to protect consumers from the exorbitant interest rates set by the money lenders as well as their illegal modes of transacting businesses.

Currently the Money Lenders set their own interest rates until the Minister empowered through the Tier 4 Microfinance Institutions and Money Lenders Act 2016 under Section 90 (1) to prescribe the maximum Interest rate which a money Lender is to charge.

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Can’t an individual start own company and secure a License to transact Money lending business?

Any individual can secure a Money Lenders License from UMRA provided they register as a Company with the Uganda Registration Services Bureau under the Companies Act 2012

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How can one secure a Money Lending License from UMRA?

Provide UMRA with the following documents;

  • a certificate of incorporation
  • forms of particulars of directors and secretary
  • particulars of the address
  • copies of national identity cards for directors and the secretary; and
  • Evidence of payment of the fees prescribed in schedule 1 to these Regulations.
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What is the difference Between UMRA and The Microfinance Support Centre Limited?

UMRA is an Authority established under Section 6 of the Tier 4 Microfinance Institution and Money Lenders Act, 2016 with the key purpose of Regulation, Supervision and Licensing the all Tier 4 Microfinance Institutions and Money Lenders in the country to ensure the financial health, sustainability and financial discipline in the industry.

The Microfinance Support Center Limited is a government owned company established in 2001 and it is one of the lead agencies in the implementation of the government’s “Prosperity for All” programme, which aims at transforming the rural economy through job creation and increase in household incomes but most importantly extension of credit services.

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How these Money Lenders are operating now?

The money Lenders are currently operating illegally unless they are licensed under the                                       Tier 4 Microfinance Institutions and Money Lenders Act 2016

  • Money Lenders are currently setting their own interest rates which are exorbitant
  • Money Lenders apply rudimentary means of debt collection
  • Confiscation of clients property
  • Mislead clients through signing wrong agreements i.e. signing sales agreements instead of a Loan agreement
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What happened to the old Money Lenders Act?

The old Money Lenders Act was Repealed and Replaced by the Tier 4 Microfinance Institutions and Money Lenders Act 2016

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Why was Uganda Micro-finance Regulatory Authority established?

  • Promoting legitimacy and building the confidence of members, customers and investors in the Microfinance Facilitating the microfinance industry to promote social and economic development Business
  • Establishing prudential standards for microfinance institutions in order to safeguard the deposits of members, prevent financial system instability of the funds of depositors and ensure stability of the financial system
  • Applying non-prudential standards to tier 4 microfinance institutions by—

(i) Defining sources of capital;

(ii) Establishing default protection mechanisms;

(iii) Enforcing compliance with generally accepted accounting practices; and

(iv) Instituting mechanisms for the prevention of fraud and financial crimes

(e) Providing a framework for the management and control of money lending

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