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IFC Committed to Growth and Development in Niger through Support for Private Business


In Niamey:
Ibrahim Cheik Diop, World Bank
Telephone: +227 73 56 16
Email: idiop@worldbank.org

In Johannesburg:
Kimberlee A. Brown, IFC
Telephone: +27 11 731 3175
Email: kbrown@ifc.org


Niamey, Niger, December 15, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is seeking to extend its support of Niger’s private sector, particularly in the country’s agribusiness, financial and general manufacturing, retail, and service sectors, where developmental impact can be greatest, IFC Vice President Thierry Tanoh said during his first visit to the country in this capacity.

Tanoh, accompanied by IFC’s new Director for Western and Central Africa Yolande Duhem, met with businesspeople and key government officials, including Nigerien President Mamadou Tandja and Prime Minister Seyni Oumarou.

“The private sector will play an increasingly important role in creating jobs and reducing poverty in Niger," Tanoh said. "IFC will work with the government of Niger to help create a business environment more suitable for private sector investment to help build a vibrant and inclusive economy."

Tanoh and members of Niger’s government and private sector discussed ways in which IFC could support the implementation of reforms identified by the IFC-World Bank Investment Climate Assessment for Niger to build a business environment more attractive to private sector investment. They also discussed potential partnerships with local banks to increase their lending to small and medium enterprises.

IFC’s strategy in Niger focuses on supporting private sector involvement in agribusiness, infrastructure, manufacturing and mining. Niger ranked 172 out of 181 countries in the IFC-World Bank Doing Business 2009 report, which lists countries based on the ease of doing business.

Niger was the first stop on Tanoh’s four country visit with IFC partners in West Africa. Tanoh will also travel to Mali, Togo and his native Cote d’Ivoire to discuss how IFC advisory services and investments can have the greatest developmental impact on those economies.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.