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IFC Supports Small Business Development in Mozambique with Links to Larger Companies


In Maputo:
Issufo Caba
Phone: +258 21  482353, +258 82 310 5210
E-mail: icaba@icf.org  

In Johannesburg:        
Daniel Musiitwa
Phone: +27 11 731 3175
E-mail: dmusiitwa@ifc.org

Maputo, August 22, 2007 — IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today signed agreements with four major corporations in Mozambique to help develop local smaller enterprises. Through MOZLINK, a new partnership program, IFC will work with the companies to mobilize, train, and support 100 small and medium suppliers over three years. The program is expected to create more than $20 million worth of supply opportunities.

The four companies—Mozal, Sasol, Cervejas de Mocambique, and Coca-Cola—will work with IFC to increase the volume and value of goods that they obtain locally from small and midsize businesses. Other large companies, including CVRD and Caminhos de Ferro de Mocambique, have shown interest in joining the program.

“This is a unique initiative from some of Mozambique’s leading companies,” said Frans-Josef Jaspers, Materials Management Manager of Mozal. “All four participating firms will review their supply chains to identify opportunities to acquire products locally that are currently brought from outside the country.”

Small and medium businesses represent a tiny portion of the Mozambique’s local supply chains. They face many challenges, including the limited ability to participate in complex bidding processes and stringent industrial, technical, quality, safety, and environmental standards set by international companies. Limited managerial skills and financing, failure to meet delivery deadlines, and lack of capacity to ensure consistent supplies, all generally put small and medium enterprises at a disadvantage.

“Enabling local small and medium enterprises to provide goods and services to larger companies will increase local employment, create new businesses, and result in increased revenue for the country,” said Babatunde Onitiri, IFC Country Manager for Mozambique.  

Representatives from the Ministries of Planning and Development, Commerce and Industry, and other stakeholders attended today’s ceremony to launch the program.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments. IFC’s vision is that poor people have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY06, IFC committed $8.3 billion, including loan participations, to 284 investments in 66 developing countries. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.