Yerevan, Armenia, August 27, 2010—Lars
Thunell, Executive Vice President and CEO of IFC, a member of the World
Bank Group, said that IFC is committed to helping minimize the impact of
the economic crisis and promote long-term recovery in Armenia.
During an August 26 visit to Yerevan, Thunell met with President Serzh
Sargsyan, Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan, other top Armenian government
officials, and IFC clients. The meetings included discussions on a range
of crisis-and-recovery-related issues.
“IFC provided strong support in Armenia during the financial crisis helping
to ensure that businesses and individuals continued to have access to finance
and preserving jobs,” said Thunell. “We look forward to continuing to
work with the government and our private sector partners to expand our
activities with a focus on financial markets, renewable energy, and improving
the regulatory environment for business.”
IFC’s crisis response program in Armenia provides financial support to
clients and advice to banks to improve management of portfolios and non-performing
assets. IFC’s expanded assistance to Armenian banks through its Global
Trade Finance Program is increasing liquidity and facilitating more cross-border
trade flows. During his visit, Thunell signed a $2 million trade finance
agreement with Armenian Inecobank.
IFC’s crisis response in Armenia also includes support for the hard-hit
real estate infrastructure, and for the mining sector, which has strong
export potential. In addition, IFC promotes energy efficiency initiatives
and finances renewable energy projects to help Armenian companies reduce
their energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, in line with IFC’s
priorities for the Europe and Central Asia region.
Since Armenia became a member of IFC in 1995, IFC has invested $87 million
in 18 projects across the industry spectrum including financial markets,
general manufacturing, energy, mining and chemicals. IFC Advisory Services
provide advice through projects focusing on the financial sector, sustainable
energy, and regulatory simplification.
In fiscal year 2010, IFC achieved its highest ever level of investments
in Armenia, with $35 million in total commitments for six projects in the
financial, mining, and construction sectors.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create
opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do
so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply
essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering
advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global
economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion
in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.