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IFC Investment in Azerdemiryolbank to Promote Housing Finance in Azerbaijan


In Washington, D.C.:
Thoko Moyo
Phone: + (202) 458-8517
E-mail: tmoyo@ifc.org


Baku, Azerbaijan, August 19, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has signed an agreement with Azerdemiryolbank to help expand the bank’s mortgage operations in Azerbaijan. The initiative is part of IFC’s Azerbaijan Housing Program, which helps facilitate development of the country’s mortgage sector and increase home buyers’ access to funding.

Through the program, IFC is providing long-term mortgage facilities to selected commercial banks, as well as advisory services to participating banks and other key market players. The $5 million loan to Azerdemiryolbank is the first transaction in IFC’s total funding package of up to $15 million, which also includes a leasing loan and a trade finance line of credit.

This project promotes the development of Azerbaijan’s primary mortgage market by providing long-term funding to the banking system and raising mortgage-underwriting standards in accordance with the best practices.

Roman Amirjanov, Chairman of the Executive Board of Azerdemiryolbank, said, “Partnering with IFC will help Azerdemiryolbank introduce new banking products to local small businesses and the mortgage market. Looking forward, we also plan to expand cooperation with IFC in the leasing and trade finance sectors.”

“Affordable housing finance creates opportunities for more people to own a home,” said Lars Thunell, IFC Executive Vice President and CEO. “IFC is pleased to continue supporting the development of Azerbaijan’s mortgage sector.”

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 should 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 syndications 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.

About Azerdemiryolbank
Founded in 1989, Azerdemiryolbank is one of the oldest privately owned banks in Azerbaijan. The bank’s shareholders include the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO). It is in the top 10 banks of Azerbaijan, with assets exceeding $256 million and total equity of $42 million as of August 2008. With an expanding branch network, the bank serves small businesses, midsize companies, and individual customers, reaching people in the country’s underserved regions. For more information, visit www.azerdemiryolbank.com.