'New wave' microfinance institutions in south-east Europe: towards a more realistic assessment of impact
political project that has guided policy interventions throughout developing countries since the early 1980s and in the transition economies since 1990. It has attracted substantial support and funding
in the context of the reconstruction of south-east Europe in the wake of the Yugoslav civil war and, more recently, in the aftermath of the Kosovo conflict of 1999. This article argues that the high-interest,
short-term loans on offer have encouraged economic development based on trading and have contributed to deindustrialization. Moreover, the withdrawal of MFIs from remote communities to towns where better
returns are possible has led to disillusion, a decline in regional solidarity and a loss of social capital.