Baku, Azerbaijan, March 6, 2012—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, has helped launch a knowledge exchange
network across Europe and Central Asia designed to enhance corporate governance
standards and help companies improve their performance.
Representatives from consultancies, non-governmental organizations, and
professional associations attended a two-day workshop in Baku that marked
the launch of the network. The participants came from 10 countries across
the Balkans, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and discussed
international best practices in corporate governance.
“It is very interesting to see the different approaches that institutions
take to this issue,” said Verica Hadzi-Vasileva Markovska, a board member
of Macedonia’s Institute of Directors. “A lot remains to be done, but
I see a strong commitment to promoting good governance across the region.”
Oliver Orton, head of IFC’s corporate governance program in Europe and
Central Asia, said: “It is vitally important for companies to have a sound
system of corporate governance in place. That will not only improve their
performance, but also help firms attract investment, allowing them to grow
and create new jobs.”
The Baku workshop, the first of its kind in Azerbaijan, was supported by
Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). During the
event, IFC introduced its corporate governance toolkit and publications
providing guidance for implementing good corporate governance practices.
It was part of IFC’s efforts to improve corporate governance standards
across Europe and Central Asia by working with the public and private sectors.
In addition to Azerbaijan, corporate governance programs have also
been implemented in the Balkans, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan and Tajikistan.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing
countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, providing
advisory services to businesses and governments, and mobilizing capital
in the international financial markets. In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty
across the globe, we helped our clients create jobs, strengthen environmental
performance, and contribute to their local communities—all while driving
our investments to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion. For more information,
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