The Effect of Social Capital on Households' Access to Microcredit in Cameroon in 2001 and 2007

The aim of this study is to identify the determinants of households’ access to microcredit in Cameroon; in particular the effect of social capital on their access to microcredit in 2001 and 2007. The study is based on data collected during the Cameroon household surveys (ECAM II and III) conducted by the National Institute of Statistics (Institut National de la Statistique, INS) in 2001 and 2007. The Multiple Component Analysis (MCA) was used to construct the social capital index while the probit model was used for modelling. The Heckman two-step procedure was used to deal with the selection bias. The study found that social capital increased the probability of households having access to microcredit. An increase in this probability was observed for the years under study (4.2% for 2001 and 9.52% for 2007). It rose as a function of the level of household income (from the first to the fifth expenditure quintile). These findings suggest that there is a need for encouraging stakeholders (both private individuals and enterprises) to group together into networks.