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IFC Helps Support Micro-Enterprises in Morocco


In Rabat:
Catherine Gozard, IFC
Phone: +212 (0)537 652 479
E-mail: CGozard@ifc.org

In Cairo:
Riham Mustafa
Phone: +20 2 2461 4230
E-mail: RMustafa@ifc.org


Rabat, Morocco, December 19, 2013—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a loan of up to $20 million to Attawfiq Micro-Finance, part of an effort to help micro enterprises in Morocco and drive economic development across the country.

IFC will also advise the lender, one of the country’s leading microfinance institutions, as it develops products tailored to micro businesses. The support will allow Attawfiq Micro-Finance to reach out to a greater number of these firms, which form the backbone of Morocco’s economy but often struggle to obtain financing. Attawfiq Micro-Finance is a subsidiary of Banque Centrale Populaire group.

“Our partnership with IFC facilitates our truly social mission, and helps us contribute to the economic and financial inclusion of a large part of the population who cannot get access to the traditional banking sector,” said Mohamed Benchaaboun, chairman of Banque Centrale Populaire group.

The project is part of IFC’s strategy to partner with local banks and channel lending to where it is needed most.

“Micro enterprises are vital to driving growth in Morocco and the wider region, and this partnership will help support those firms,” said Mouayed Makhlouf, IFC Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “At the same time, it should signal to prospective investors the growth potential of the microfinance industry in Morocco."

The project is the latest partnership between IFC and Banque Centrale Populaire, one of Morocco’s leading lenders. Last fiscal year, IFC invested $204 million in the bank, helping it expand operations and support smaller businesses in Morocco and Sub-Saharan Africa.

The advisory portion of the project is funded by the Middle East and North Africa Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Facility, which is jointly managed by IFC and the World Bank. The program provides advice and financial support to smaller business across the region.

The Attawfiq Micro-Finance partnership is part of IFC’s efforts to support economic growth in Morocco. During the 2013 fiscal year, which ended on June 30, IFC committed around $272 million in the country. Those investments were designed to bolster the financial sector, allow Moroccan companies to expand into new markets, and provide young people with the skills they need to find jobs. At the same time, IFC ramped up its advisory work, helping companies conserve resources, combat climate change, and resolve commercial disputes quickly.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in more than 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. In FY13, our investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $25 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit www.ifc.org

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About Attawfiq Micro-Finance
Attawfiq Micro-Finance is a non-government micro-finance institution created in March 2000 by Groupe Banque Populaire to contribute to the effort to eliminate poverty. Attawfiq Micro-Finance provides microloans to economically vulnerable individuals, including women and unemployed youth, to help them become active participants in Morocco’s economy.