Press Releases
print

IFC Invests in Kalukundi Mining Project to Support Revitalization of Democratic Republic of Congo


In Washington, DC:
Hannfried von Hindenburg
Phone: +1 (202) 458-5613

Email:  hvonhindenburg@ifc.org

In Johannesburg:
Houtan Bassiri
Phone: +27 11 731 3179
Email: hbassiri@ifc.org


Washington, DC, November 21, 2007 — IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced today it will invest in the Kalukundi mining project in the Democratic Republic of Congo to support economic revitalization in a country that is beginning to stabilize after years of conflict. IFC plans to purchase shares worth about CAD$4 million in Africo Resources Ltd. to help finance the company’s copper-cobalt project in the Katanga province.

“IFC’s decision to proceed with this investment shows the progress the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo is making in improving the investment climate in the mining sector,” said Tony Harwood, President and CEO of Africo Resources, the project sponsor.

IFC and its partners are helping establish an integrated community development program for the area near the mine. IFC’s team is also helping upgrade the project’s environmental and social impact assessments to international best practice. IFC’s assistance is expected to set a positive example for the local mining sector.

“IFC is pleased to make this investment in the DRC which will bring substantial development benefits to the Katanga province,” said IFC Director for Oil, Gas, Mining, and Chemicals Somit Varma. Support for the country is an important part of IFC’s strategy in Sub-Saharan Africa. “We are committed to helping the private sector play a more important role in helping African nations like the DRC emerge from conflict,” said IFC Director for Sub-Saharan Africa Thierry Tanoh.

IFC proceeded with the investment after receiving government acknowledgement of the investment in line with IFC’s usual procedures. IFC expects that Africo’s ongoing legal dispute with Akam Mining will be resolved in the courts of the Democratic Republic of Congo in accordance with appropriate legal principles. Africo assured IFC of its commitment to pursue its rights diligently in the dispute and to provide investors with updates on its status.

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 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 loan participations and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.

26209