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IFC, Arab Monetary Fund and UAE Help Boost Business Lending in the Emirates

In Cairo:
Riham Mustafa
Phone: +20 22 461 4230

Dubai, UAE, February 16, 2012—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the Arab Monetary Fund are partnering with the Ministry of Finance of the United Arab Emirates to help smaller businesses access credit.

IFC will help the ministry draft a law on secured transactions and develop a nation-wide registry in which companies can list corporate assets, from equipment to inventory to accounts receivables. This is expected to help smaller business, which often lack other forms of collateral, like land , to  secure financing from banks and other financial institutions.

“This will give lenders a clear portrait of potential borrowers,” said Mr. Al Khoori Under Secretary of the Ministry of Finance. “That will in turn give them confidence to engage smaller businesses, which are a vital part of our economy.”

Many countries in the countries lack fully-developed financial infrastructure, which includes the institutions, regulations, and technologies that govern financial transactions.  As a result, only 24 percent of small and medium businesses in MENA have access to finance. Financial institutions are sometimes hesitant to lend to these companies because roughly 80 percent of their assets are moveable.

“Smaller businesses are a key engine of economic growth,” said Mouayed Makhlouf, IFC Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “We believe that the UAE can play a leading role in demonstrating that secured lending reform can increase access to finance for those who need it most.”

The partnership with the Arab Monetary Fund and the government of the UAE is part of IFC’s Arab Secured Transactions Initiative. It aims to partner with regional governments in the Middle East and North Africa to assess secured lending laws and to foster a vibrant environment for businesses.

About IFC

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, visit
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About AMF:
The Arab Monetary Fund is a regional organization that was founded in 1976 and started operations in 1977. The fund has 22 member countries and promotes the development of Arab financial markets, establishing policies and modes of monetary cooperation. It does this by providing short- and medium-term credit facilities and other support to member states to help finance their overall balance of payment deficits. It also provides technical assistance to banking and monetary institutions in member states and conducts research, disseminating knowledge on related topics.

About UAE’s Ministry of Finance:
Under the guidance of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Minister of Finance, and HE Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, the Ministry of Finance (MoF) in the United Arab Emirates is responsible for the implementation of all fiscal, monetary and industrial policies related to UAE’s economic development. The ministry is also seeking to develop the UAE financial sector and increase access to finance for small and medium enterprises.