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IFC Supports the Microfinance Sector in Morocco


In Rabat:
Joumana Cobein
Phone: + (212) 3765-2479

Fax: + (212) 3765-2893
E-mail: jcobein@ifc.org


Rabat, Morocco/ Washington DC, July 12, 2007 — IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, and the Association Al Amana pour la Promotion des Microentreprises, a leading microfinance institution in Morocco, have signed an investment agreement to promote the country’s microfinance sector. The $20 million agreement, which includes a subordinated loan to Al Amana, a local currency guarantee, and a partial credit guarantee, will help the company increase its microfinance operations and improve services for more than 400,000 active borrowers.

Al Amana helps low-income people become productive contributors to economic growth, giving them the opportunity to improve their lives and escape poverty.  Al Amana provides financial support and advice, particularly to women in rural areas and young people, many of whom have lucrative projects but lack access to the traditional banking system. Al Amana is part of the Women World Banking network, a close partner of IFC.

Fouad Abdelmoumni, Al Amana’s General Manager, stressed the importance of microlending. He also noted, “Our growth in the region is critical as we expand our products and services to reach poor people who seek to become successful entrepreneurs. IFC’s support will provide us with better leverage and help increase our microfinance operations throughout Morocco.”

Jyrki Koskelo, IFC Director for Global Financial Markets, said, “This project shows IFC’s continued priority to promote the sustainable development of microfinance associations in Morocco. The package demonstrates our continued efforts to support the microfinance sector, an industry that serves the poorest segments of the society with crucial access to financial resources.”

Michael Essex, IFC Regional Director for Middle East and North Africa, said, “By supporting the leading provider of microloans in the Middle East and North Africa, this partnership is expected to spur the growth of microfinance in Morocco, which will help create jobs and reduce income disparities.”

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 syndications, to 284 investments in 66 developing countries. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.