Sana’a, 6 September 2006—
The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World
Bank, today signed an agreement with Yemen’s Ministry of Oil and Minerals,
to strengthen the country’s framework for mining policy. The project aims
to increase the private sector development of high-value minerals industries.
Managed by PEP-MENA, IFC’s technical
assistance facility in the Middle East and North Africa, the project will
help review and reform Yemen’s mining laws, regulations, and fiscal regime.
The project team will also map and redesign the sector’s administrative
procedures, develop a National Mining Policy, and review the Geological
Survey and Minerals Resources Board.
Syed Gulrez Hoda, IFC’s manager of
the project, noted, “Yemen’s mining sector has outstanding potential.
An improved policy framework will help attract new investment and improve
the country’s economy.”
Yemen’s mineral legislation and draft
regulations reflect the government’s desire to liberalize the industry,
but the country does not have a comprehensive mining policy.
The current fiscal regime leaves
Yemen in a less favorable position versus other mining countries, and administrative
practices to obtain licenses, permits, and approvals are not standardized.
Attracting major mining companies requires an overall framework, with clear
definitions of what private investors can do, what the operating conditions
are, and what the requirements are for establishing operations.
The one-year project follows upon a
workshop organized by PEP-MENA in collaboration with IFC’s Oil, Gas, Mining,
and Chemicals Department in December 2005. The workshop displayed
international best practices in mining.
PEP-MENA is IFC’s technical assistance
facility that supports private sector development in the Middle East and
North Africa. PEP-MENA focuses on improving the business enabling and regulatory
environment; strengthening the financial sector; promoting the growth of
small and medium enterprises and their support services, such as business
organizations and consulting firms; helping restructure and privatize state-owned
enterprises; and developing viable private sector and public-private partnership
projects, especially in infrastructure.
The International Finance Corporation,
the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, is the largest multilateral
provider of financing for private enterprise in developing countries. IFC
finances private sector investments, mobilizes capital in international
financial markets, facilitates trade, helps clients improve social and
environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice
to businesses and governments. From its founding in 1956 through FY06,
IFC has committed more than $56 billion of its own funds for private sector
investments in the developing world and mobilized an additional $25 billion
in syndications for 3,531 companies in 140 developing countries. With the
support of funding from donors, it has also provided more than $1 billion
in technical assistance and advisory services. For more information, visit