Sana’a/Washington, D.C., June 28, 2007—IFC,
the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, has signed an agreement
with Arabian Yemen Cement Company Limited that will help generate employment
in one of the Republic of Yemen’s least developed regions. IFC will provide
a $70 million loan for its own account and mobilize an additional $55 million
from participant banks to build the first cement plant in eastern Yemen.
The greenfield cement plant will be located near Mukalla, the capital of
Hadramout Governorate. It will use state-of-the-art, energy-efficient technology
and have a capacity of 1.54 million tons per year. The project is expected
to substitute for imports by producing comparable cement locally.
Engineer Abdullah Ahmed Bugshan, Chairman of Arabian Yemen Cement Company,
said, “As it is difficult to obtain long-term financing for such a large
project in Yemen, IFC’s support is a critical component of this project.
IFC has also been instrumental in providing advice on the technical, environmental,
and social aspects of the project.”
Michael Essex, IFC Director for the Middle East and North Africa, said,
“With this investment, IFC will have committed about $100 million in Yemen
this fiscal year. In IFC’s 50-year history, this is by far our highest
level of investment in the country. Such financing is recognition of the
investment potential of the country's private sector."
Dimitris Tsitsiragos, IFC Director for General Manufacturing and Services,
said, “This project fits well with IFC’s strategy, as it supports a large-scale
initiative in a frontier country and promotes cross-border investment by
regional companies in the non-oil sector. The creation of a new producer
will help make more cement available at affordable prices.”
IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, promotes open and
competitive markets in developing countries. IFC supports sustainable
private sector companies and other partners in generating productive jobs
and delivering basic services, so that people have opportunities to escape
poverty and improve their lives. Through FY06, IFC Financial Products has
committed more than $56 billion in funding for private sector investments
and mobilized an additional $25 billion in syndications for 3,531 companies
in 140 developing countries. IFC Advisory Services and donor partners have
provided more than $1 billion in program support to build small enterprises,
to accelerate private participation in infrastructure, to improve the business-enabling
environment, to increase access to finance, and to strengthen environmental
and social sustainability. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.
About Arabian Yemen Cement Company Limited
Arabian Cement is majority owned by prominent Saudi sponsors. Its core
sponsors are two well-known Saudi business executives, Engineer Abdullah
Ahmed Bugshan and Sheikh Mohammed Hussain Al-Amoudi. The company is also
sponsored by Eastern Province Cement Company of Saudi Arabia.