Washington, D.C., May 31, 2006- The
International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World
Bank Group, has bought shares worth $2 million in the mining company Gippsland
Limited. Gippsland is looking at developing its tantalum, tin, and gold
exploration activities in Egypt. This is IFC’s first investment in the
Egyptian mining industry and will highlight the benefits of adopting international
standards in the sector’s development.
The financing will allow Gippsland to expand on the work of a recent feasibility
study to ensure commercial viability for its Abu Dabbab tantalum and tin
project. IFC's funding will also support the company's ongoing gold exploration
activities in Egypt.
Rashad Kaldany, IFC’s Director for
Oil, Gas, Mining, and Chemicals, said, “We are delighted to team up with
Gippsland on its activities in Egypt and to support the Egyptian government’s
intention to develop its mineral resources in line with international best
Jack Telford, Executive Chairman of Gippsland, added, “We are pleased
to partner with IFC at this important stage in our development. IFC’s
investment and vast international and industry experience will assist us
in developing our tantalum, tin, and potential gold projects. It
will also provide valuable guidance on community engagement and other mining
development best practices.”
Gippsland is an Australian company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange
and London’s Alternative Investment Market. The company’s main development
and exploration licenses are in Egypt.
Tantalum is a mineral that can store energy in a size- and weight-efficient
way, and is therefore attractive for use in mobile telephones, pagers,
personal computers, and automotive electronics.
The International Finance Corporation is the private sector arm of the
World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C. IFC coordinates
its activities with the other institutions of the World Bank Group but
is legally and financially independent. Its 178 member countries
provide its share capital and collectively determine its policies.
The mission of IFC is to promote sustainable private sector investment
in developing and transition 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 FY05, IFC has committed more than $49 billion of its own
funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319 companies in 140
developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio as of FY05 was
$19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held for participants
in loan syndications. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.