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IFC Supports Microfinance Transformation Processes in Central Asia to Bring Sustainability


In Almaty:
Assel Choibekova
Phone: +(727) 298 0580
E-mail: achoibekova@ifc.org

Almaty, Kazakhstan, August 6, 2009—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping four microfinance institutions in Azerbaijan and Central Asia expand the range of services offered to micro and small enterprises and entrepreneurs and to boost access to finance in underserved communities.

IFC also is assisting the institutions to transform into banks or deposit-taking organizations to become more sustainable.

IMON International and Arvand in Tajikistan, Bai Tushum in the Kyrgyz Republic, and Credagro in Azerbaijan will benefit from IFC’s Azerbaijan and Central Asia Microfinance Transformation Support Project to implement microfinance best practices and transformation plans. IFC’s support includes an advisory services package in institution-building, developing a corporate strategy, and mentoring of senior management.

The microfinance institutions experienced explosive growth over the past few years and need to complement intensive growth with improved financial management, risk management, internal audit and control, and investor relations.

“This initiative is a part of IFC’s global strategy to support commercial viability of microlending organizations,” said Rolf Behrndt, IFC Senior Operations Officer for Investment Climate Advisory Services in Europe and Central Asia. “The well-managed growth of these microfinance institutions will allow them to expand greatly the access to finance for underserved communities, especially in rural areas, and thus raise standards of living and improve lives.”

Since 2008, IFC has worked to support the transformation process of microfinance institutions across Azerbaijan and Central Asia, helping them improve operations, provide a full range of financial services, and become more sustainable.  

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 $15 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.