Press Releases

IFC Executive Vice President and CEO Highlights Priorities for Tajikistan

In Dushanbe:
Iskandar Usmonov
Phone: (+992 48) 701 14 68

In Moscow:
Ilya Sverdlov
Phone (+7495) 411 7555

Dushanbe, Tajikistan, August 18, 2008—Lars Thunell, Executive Vice President and CEO of IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, said that IFC will continue to support private sector  growth in Tajikistan through its advisory work in microfinance, corporate governance, mortgage lending, leasing, and small business development. Concluding an official visit to the country on August 16, Thunell also emphasized IFC’s aim to expand its investment portfolio, seeking new opportunities in such areas as hydropower and agribusiness.

This was Thunell’s first official visit to Tajikistan since joining IFC in 2006. He met with President Emomali Rahmon to discuss issues and opportunities for cooperation in promoting the country’s economic growth. “Last winter’s electricity shortages made clear how fragile power generation is in Tajikistan. IFC is supporting increased private investment in the sector to develop the country’s hydropower potential.” Thunell said. “Agribusiness is another priority area for us, as the country is increasingly exposed to rising food prices.”

Thunell met with the management of IFC clients Eskhata Bank, First MicroFinance Bank, IMON Microfinance, and Tojiksodirotbonk. These financial institutions recently signed loan agreements with IFC that will help expand financial services to small businesses and farmers in Tajikistan.

Thunell also visited shareholders of the SugdAgroServ, an innovative finance and marketing cooperative for small farmers in Khujand that was launched in 2002 with help from IFC and the Swiss government. Since then, the cooperative has provided nearly $5 million in financing for its 1,000 shareholders.

Since Tajikistan became an IFC member in 1995, IFC has financed more than 17 projects totaling over $30 million. In the last few years, IFC has spent about $2 million a year in advisory services locally. In fiscal 2008, IFC committed $17 million in financing to private sector clients in the country.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. IFC’s vision is that people should have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07, IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through syndications and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information, visit