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IFC to Help Mozambique’s BCI Fomento Increase Lending to Smaller Businesses


In Johannesburg:
Houtan Bassiri
Phone:  +27 11 731 3179
E-mail:
hbassiri@ifc.org


Maputo, Mozambique, September 16, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced that it will provide financing and advisory services to Mozambique’s BCI Fomento to help it increase lending to smaller businesses that have difficulty accessing credit in Sub-Saharan Africa.

IFC will provide BCI Fomento with an $8.5 million loan and advisory services, with a focus on expanding the bank’s range of products and services, enhancing risk management practices, and helping it serve more small and medium enterprises. The deal is part of an IFC program designed to boost lending to smaller businesses across Sub-Saharan Africa through local banks.

“Working with IFC will increase BCI Fomento’s capacity to make long-term loans to small and medium enterprises,” said Ibrahimo Ibrahimo, CEO of BCI Fomento. “Smaller businesses are a vital component of Mozambique’s economy and a key driver of sustainable economic growth.”

As the second-largest bank in Mozambique, BCI Fomento has demonstrated success focusing on small and medium enterprises. Working with IFC, the bank aims to increase its loans to smaller businesses to the equivalent of $84 million within a year and close to the equivalent of $200 million within five years, from less than $75 million currently.

“Supporting small and medium enterprises is a central part of IFC’s strategy to promote the private sector in Africa,” said James Scriven, IFC Director of Global Financial Markets for Africa and Latin America. “IFC hopes to demonstrate that smaller businesses are an attractive sector for bank lending and make it easier for such businesses to secure financing.”

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. IFC's vision is that people should have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07, IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through syndications and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.