Bishkek, June 1, 2007 — IFC, the
private sector arm of the World Bank Group, has signed an agreement to
provide advisory services to Micro Credit Agency Bai-Tushum Financial Foundation,
one of Kyrgyzstan’s leading microlending institutions. This support will
help the institution transition into a commercial bank and expand its financial
services to reach smaller entrepreneurs in the Kyrgyz Republic. The signing
ceremony was attended by Michel Mordasini, Executive Director from Switzerland,
IFC/World Bank Board of Directors.
This agreement follows a $2.2 million
IFC financing package provided last year to Bai-Tushum. Under the new agreement,
IFC will assist with the company’s transition as well as wrap up work
it began in 2005 to help Bai-Tushum develop its leasing operations, policies,
Guinara Shamshieva, General Manager
of Bai-Tushum said, “IFC’s financing and advisory support will enable
us to expand our financial services, especially in rural areas of the Kyrgyz
Republic. This support will also aid the smooth transformation of our foundation
into a commercial bank.”
The $300,000 advisory project will include
training for Bai-Tushum’s employees on risk management, microdeposit services,
and internal controls and audits. The project is supported by the Netherlands
Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Gorton de Mond, IFC Regional Representative
for Central Asia, said, “The Bai-Tushum project reflects IFC’s strategy
to strengthen local financial institutions and expand microfinance in the
region to support private sector development. It is critical to provide
support for smaller businesses, as they help boost the private sector and
IFC’s development agenda in the Kyrgyz
Republic complements the goals of local authorities for developing the
country’s financial sector. The Bai-Tushum project is the first of its
kind in the country and provides an opportunity for the authorities to
refine and apply the rules and regulations that address the transformation
of qualified microcredit institutions.
IFC, the private sector arm of the World
Bank Group, promotes open and competitive markets in developing countries.
IFC supports sustainable private sector companies and other partners in
generating productive jobs and delivering basic services, so that people
have opportunities to escape poverty and improve their lives. Through FY06,
IFC Financial Products have committed more than $56 billion in funding
for private sector investments and mobilized an additional $25 billion
in syndications for 3,531 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC Advisory
Services and donor partners have provided more than $1 billion in program
support to build small enterprises, to accelerate private participation
in infrastructure, to improve the business enabling environment, to increase
access to finance, and to strengthen environmental and social sustainability.
For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.
Bai-Tushum was established in 2000 with
the support of the United States Agricultural Cooperative Development International/Volunteers
in Overseas Cooperative Assistance and CARITAS, a Swiss relief agency.
Bai-Tushum provides microcredit services to private entrepreneurs,
traders, farmers, and micro and small agricultural enterprises. Its
loans range from $500 to $30,000 and are denominated in the local currency.
The institution received a merit award for financial transparency in a
worldwide competition organized by the Consultative Group to Assist the
Poor, a global resource center for microfinance standards.