WASHINGTON, D.C., BUCHAREST, June 7, 2004
— Peter Woicke, head of the International Finance Corporation, the
World Bank Group’s private sector arm, is visiting Romania June 7 - 9.
Mr. Woicke is also World Bank Managing Director for Private Sector Development.
“My visit underlines the strategic importance IFC attaches to its work
in Romania,” said Mr. Woicke. He added, “IFC’s main goal in Romania
is to support development of the private sector, helping it benefit from
opportunities and meet challenges during the EU accession period. IFC will
further increase its investments and advisory services in order to strengthen
market forces and help Romania’s economy integrate into the EU’s single
Mr. Woicke will call on President Iliescu, Prime Minister Nastase, Finance
Minister Tanaescu, Foreign Affairs Minister Geoana, and Health Minister
Branzan to discuss Romania’s roadmap for private sector development and
explore how IFC can best assist the reform agenda. Mr. Woicke will also
meet current and potential clients including Banca Transilvania, Banca
Comerciala Romana, BankPost, Miro Bank, and Arctic Gaesti.
While in Bucharest, Mr. Woicke will sign an agreement for a 20 million
Euro loan to Banca Transilvania, which will give further momentum to the
bank’s mortgage lending operations and help expand the emerging housing
finance market in Romania. Mr. Woicke will also announce the disbursement
of a $111 million equity stake in Banca Comerciala Romana, in advance of
its impending privatization. In dollar terms, the loan represents IFC’s
largest-ever single equity investment in a bank. IFC, together with co-investor
EBRD, has also spearheaded major changes in corporate governance at BCR
to prepare it for privatization.
IFC’s strategic priorities will include further support for Romania’s
large-scale privatizations and financial sector reform. IFC will also help
advance private-public partnerships, as it has started to in the health
sector; support the restructuring of Romania’s municipal infrastructure;
and invest in competitive manufacturing industries.
IFC’s key investments in Romania include two privatized banks, BCR and
Banc Post, as well as projects in small business lending, housing finance,
insurance, and leasing. In the manufacturing sector, IFC has provided financing
for the paper, automotive parts, household products, cable manufacturing,
and wood processing industries. IFC has also assisted the government in
restructuring public utilities and attracting private capital to the energy
and health sectors.
To date, IFC has committed more than $580 million in financing for projects
in Romania. Investments include more than $390 million for of IFC’s own
account and $190 million for banks participating in loan syndications.
Currently, Romania represents IFC’s second-largest country portfolio in
Southern Europe and Central Asia after Turkey. IFC’s committed financing
to Romania is expected to reach $165 million in fiscal year 2004.
The mission of IFC (www.ifc.org)
is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries,
helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. IFC finances private
sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international
financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability,
and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.
From its founding in 1956 through FY03, IFC has committed more than $37
billion of its own funds and arranged $22 billion in syndications for 2,990
companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio
as of FY03 was $16.8 billion for its own account and $6.6 billion held
for participants in loan syndications.