Women in masks sorting grain along conveyor belt in factory.

Inclusive markets

We help poor people to increase and build reliable sources of income by gaining access to new markets, obtaining better prices for their produce and accessing expertise, services and finance to grow their trades.

Markets are everywhere. Poor women and men use markets every day as producers, traders, service providers, employees and consumers. Many have the energy and enterprise to succeed, but the dice is loaded against them.

Our current economic system worsens inequality. We believe that markets and enterprise that include poor producers can be a ladder out of poverty.

We work with farmers, producers and small traders to help them to build small businesses and to make best use of local and national markets, in which to sell their produce, grow their income and lift themselves and their families out of poverty. 

Our approach

Our inclusive markets programme aims to:

  • Empower poor producers to build secure and reliable sources of income
  • Enable poor women and men to gain access to new markets or obtain greater value for their products and services in existing ones. Read more in our guidance document
  • Tackle the power imbalances in markets that are keeping people poor
  • Enable poor producers and consumers to access technology-based information services and off grid energy
  • Invest in marginalised producers, building their understanding and ownership of their market, giving them the confidence to be better entrepreneurs
  • Make the markets poor people operate within more inclusive
  • Facilitate access to investment funding for small enterprises in our market programmes through our incubator fund and through the investment platform Access to Capital for Rural Enterprises.
  • Support access to external expertise focused on commercial analysis and technical assistance including business planning. Read more in our guidance document.

Our Impact

Christian Aid has been developing its approach to inclusive market development since 2011 and we now have inclusive markets programmes in more than 10 countries.

Our markets work is spread across Africa, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East, and includes work on the coffee sector in Burundi, dairy farming in Bangladesh and shrimp fishing in El Salvador.

We also enable access to energy and information services in order to help people build livelihoods that are reliable and resilient and work in many countries on a range of agricultural products. 

Visit our inclusive markets website to view a range of case studies and recent successes.

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