Press Releases

IFC Trade Program Expands in Pakistan, Boosting Access to Finance for Entrepreneurs

In Washington, D.C.:
Lotte Pang
Phone: +1 202 758 4290

In Cairo:
Riham Mustafa
Phone: +2024619140 ext 306

Washington, D.C., April 24, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced that Pakistan’s MCB Bank Limited has joined the IFC Global Trade Finance Program as an issuing bank, boosting access to trade finance for entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises in Pakistan.

The IFC Global Trade Finance Program promotes trade with emerging markets worldwide by supporting flows of goods and services to and from developing countries. IFC provides guarantee coverage of bank risk in emerging markets, allowing recipients to expand their trade finance transactions within an extensive network of countries and banks and to enhance their trade finance coverage.

Atif Bajwa, President and CEO of MCB Bank Limited, said, “We are pleased to join the Global Trade Finance Program and build a strong relationship with IFC. Through the program, we will be able to enhance our trade product offering, extend our relationship with correspondent banks worldwide, and structure trade finance solutions to meet the needs of our clients and help them increase their business in new markets around the globe.”

Michael Essex, IFC Director for the Middle East and North Africa, said, “IFC’s partnership with MCB Bank demonstrates our commitment to expanding access to finance in Pakistan. Through our Global Trade Finance Program, institutions can support the country’s growing international trade flows and enhance their ability to respond to the needs of their clients, especially small and medium enterprises.”

Priyamvada Singh, IFC trade specialist for the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia, said, “MCB Bank’s participation in the IFC Global Trade Finance Program will help expand the bank’s trade capacity with a wider network of correspondent banks, providing the flexibility to respond to the evolving global environment for Pakistan’s trade flows.”

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 poor people should have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY2007, 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

About MCB Bank Limited
MCB is a leading private sector bank in Pakistan, offering a wide range of products and services to corporate and retail customers through a variety of delivery channels. It has a network of nearly 1,020 branches, including eight Islamic banking branches within Pakistan and six overseas. For more information, visit