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National Fund for Enterprise Support and IFC Sign Agreement on Training for Small and Medium Enterprises in Jordan


Jordan:
Ahmed Attiga
Resident Representative
Phone: +962-6-568-2871
Email: aattiga@ifc.org

Bashar Al-Ali
Business Edge Coordinator in Jordan
Phone: +962-6-568-2871, ext. 241
Email: balali@ifc.org


Amman, 30 May, 2006— The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank, today signed an agreement with the National Fund for Enterprise Support, which will allow this local Jordanian institution to provide IFC’s Business Edge training to the country’s small and medium enterprise sector.

Together with Business Edge, the National Fund for Enterprise Support will organize up to  25 open seminars in major towns across Jordan in an effort to increase awareness of management training opportunities among SMEs. In an effort to increase demand for the training, the institution will also subsidize end-user access through agreements with accredited Business Edge training providers in Jordan, including Executrain, Ejabi, and Compubase.

Michel Botzung, IFC’s Business Edge Program Manager, commented, "We expect our agreement with the National Fund for Enterprise Support to significantly improve local SMEs' access to management training, thus increasing their potential for growth and productivity."

The National Fund for Enterprise Support is a nonprofit fund established by the Jordanian government under the Jordan-Japan Industrial Development Cooperation Program and endorsed by an agreement between the Ministry of Finance and the Higher Council for Science and Technology. It aspires to increase the operational and competitive capacity of local SMEs by providing financial assistance to management modernization projects. The organization is also operating a national subsidy scheme that aims to increase the management competency of SME owners and employees in Jordan.

The International Finance Corporation is the private sector arm of the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C.  IFC coordinates its activities with the other institutions of the World Bank Group but is legally and financially independent.  Its 178 member countries provide its share capital and collectively determine its policies.

The mission of IFC (www.ifc.org) is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing and transition countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. From its founding in 1956 through FY05, IFC has committed more than $49 billion of its own funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio as of FY05 was $19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held for participants in loan syndications.  

Business Edge is the brand name for IFC’s international range of management training products and services, specially designed for owners and managers of SMEs. It covers 36 management topics in five fields, namely: Marketing, Human Resources, Production and Operations, Finance and Accounting, and Productivity Skills.

Business Edge has been successfully launched in several Asian countries. Based on this experience, IFC’s Private Enterprise Partnership for the Middle East and North Africa isrolling out the product across the Middle East, and training is now available in Egypt, Oman, Saudi Arabia, the West Bank and Gaza, and Yemen. As of today, IFC/PEP-MENA has trained 3,322 SMEs across the region through its training providers.

IFC/PEP-MENA provides its Business Edge product range, which includes self-study management workbooks, trainer manuals, and train-the-trainer workshops, to local training providers. These in turn use the Business Edge products as a core in designing their training programs for SMEs. IFC/PEP-MENA certifies the training providers and monitors their performance, ensuring consistent quality standards. Each training provider invests in promoting Business Edge–based training to SMEs. IFC/PEP-MENA in turn supports all training providers through an umbrella promotion campaign.

PEP-MENA is IFC’s technical assistance facility that supports private sector development in the Middle East and North Africa. PEP-MENA focuses on improving the business enabling and regulatory environment; strengthening the financial sector; promoting the growth of small and medium enterprises and their support services, such as business organizations and consulting firms; helping restructure and privatize state-owned enterprises; and developing viable private sector and public-private partnership projects, especially in infrastructure.