The International Finance Corporation (IFC)
has approved US$22.7 million in financing for three projects in the Kingdom
of Morocco. Mr. AndrÈ Hovaguimian, IFC Director for Central Asia, Middle
East, and North Africa, was present today at the signing ceremony for the
three projects in Casablanca. IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is
the largest multilateral source of loan and equity financing for private
sector projects in developing countries.
Ciments du Maroc to Receive IFC Financing IFC has approved financing of
US$14.2 million for Ciments du Maroc (CIMAR).
The financing consists of a US$10 million loan for IFC's own account and
a US$4.2 million loan that will be syndicated with Banque Indosuez. The
loans will help finance the modernization and environmental upgrading of
CIMAR's Agadir cement plant, at a total cost of US$25.5 million, and will
also provide additional working capital. The principal shareholder and
sponsor of CIMAR is Ciments FranÁais. The other main shareholders are Banque
Nationale pour le DÈveloppement Economique, and SociÈtÈ Nationale d'Investissement.
Over the past three years, IFC has played a major role in improving environment
standards in the cement industry of Morocco, through its participation
in cement expansion projects in the country.
IFC to Invest in SociÈtÈ Marocaine d'IntermÈdiation FinanciËre
IFC has approved an equity investment of US$0.5 million in SociÈtÈ Marocaine
d'IntermÈdiation FinanciËre (SMIF) in the Kingdom of Morocco. This amount
will represent 10 percent of the proposed capital of the new company. As
the first financial institution of its kind in Morocco, SMIF's main objective
will be to develop the interbank money market and the secondary market
in government securities and bank guaranteed private paper. To do so, SMIF
is expected to become a market-maker in public and private debt securities.
The project is sponsored by a group of Moroccan financial institutions,
led by Banque Marocaine du Commerce ExtÈrieur (BMCE). The foreign technical
partner for this venture is Compagnie Parisienne de RÈescompte (CPR), a
leading French investment bank.
Euratlas Capital Development to Receive IFC Financing
IFC has approved an equity investment of US$8 million in Euratlas Capital
Development, a fund to be established in Morocco in the Tangier offshore
zone. Euratlas will have a capital of about US$40 million and is going
to be Morocco's first private equity fund. The Fund is sponsored by Wafabank,
an eminent Moroccan commercial bank, Siparex, a leading independent venture
capital company in Europe, and PROPARCO, the private sector arm of the
French bilateral development agency Caisse Francaise de Developpement .
Euratlas will provide capital to existing Moroccan enterprises and would
be a valuable source of equity finance in the Casablanca stock market where
such resources are at present limited. Other than its investment, IFC has
also brought to bear its perspective and experience of emerging markets
in structuring the Fund.