Kigali, November 30, 2007— IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is expanding its activities and development
impact in Rwanda with a focus on improving infrastructure, supporting smaller
businesses, and creating a more favorable environment for investments.
Highlighting IFC’s efforts to help the private sector create jobs and
growth, IFC Executive Vice President and CEO Lars Thunell met with Rwandan
President Paul Kagame, government ministers and senior officials, development
partners, local private sector representatives, and IFC clients during
a two-day visit to the country.
“Rwanda’s economic reforms and strong
growth signal a commitment to reducing poverty, especially through a more
dynamic private sector,” Thunell said. “IFC is the right partner for
Rwandan businesses that seek innovative solutions, global expertise, and
Thunell yesterday signed an agreement
for IFC’s Global Trade Finance Program to provide guarantees of up to
$2 million against Banque Commerciale du Rwanda’s underlying trade transactions,
covering the bank’s payment risk. IFC’s investment will help increase
the country’s global trade volumes.
The trade finance agreement marks IFC’s
third investment-related transaction in Rwanda in less than a year, and
its first in the financial sector. IFC is also supporting renovation of
the Kigali Serena Hotel, part of the country’s effort to attract more
tourism and foreign direct investment. Another transaction provided IFC
financing to Intraspeed, a major freight and forwarding company.
Thunell today visited the Agaseke Promotion
Project. Supported by the Mayor of Kigali and Rwanda’s First Lady, Mrs.
Jeannette Kagame, the project was set up to provide income-generating activities
that benefit poverty-stricken women and their families. IFC is considering
supporting the project expand its activities, analyze the barriers
to women’s participation in private sector development, and implement
an access to finance program for women entrepreneurs.
IFC’s strategy in Rwanda focuses on
mobilizing direct investment to key sectors for maximum development impact,
including tourism, infrastructure, financial markets, agribusiness, and
construction. IFC also aims to support small and medium enterprises in
the country through advisory programs that promote leasing, build entrepreneurial
skills, improve the business climate, and increase access to finance.
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 poor people 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 loan participations
and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries.
IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information,