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IFC Sustainability in Action in Africa: Mozal Linkages Programs Spur New Contracting Opportunities for Local Small Businesses


In Washington:
Ahmed Badawi-Malik

Phone: +1 (202) 458-7148

Fax:     +1 (202) 974-4384

Email:
Abadawi@ifc.org

In Maputo:

Issufo Caba

Phone: + 258 1 49-28-41

Fax:     + 258 1 49-28-93

Email:
Icaba@ifc.org


MAPUTO/WASHINGTON, D.C., October 19, 2004 Fresh from their success in the Mozal linkages programs supported by the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, a group of 15 Mozambican small and medium enterprises are now winning contracts from other large scale investments in Mozambique.

The group of enterprises represent former and current suppliers to the Mozal aluminum smelter plant that had all successfully supplied contracts to Mozal under linkages programs for small firms facilitated by IFC, African Project Development Facility (APDF), World Bank PODE-CAT, Mozal, and the Center for Investment Promotion.


With the assistance from APDF and the Center for Investment Promotion, the 15 small and medium businesses have now joined forces to create the Mozambique Business Network. The Network focuses on accessing and winning contracts from other large-scale businesses in Mozambique.


One of the main functions of the Network is to hold monthly forums to link its members with corporations, financial institutions and other relevant stakeholders. The first forum was held in September 2003. APDF has helped support and facilitate other monthly fora, involving, among others, presentations from the Port of Maputo, Mozal, Chibuto Corridor Sands, two large sugar mills.


Eight members of the Mozambique Business Network have been awarded contracts by large local firms valued at $500,000, owing to the fora - and this number is expected to double within the next year.


The founding members of the Network are businesses that initially participated in the IFC, APDF, World Bank, Mozal, Center for Investment Promotion linkages programs: the SME Empowerment Linkages Program, which linked 15 local small businesses to contracts worth $5 million from “Phase II” of the Mozal aluminum smelter, and the on-going Mozal Operations Linkages Program, which  has assisted small businesses to win $1.7 million in  contracts with Mozal’s operations.


These two programs have built the capacity of small businesses to meet the rigorous qualifying standards of Mozal and other leading international firms. Based on their successful experience with Mozal, the SMEs formed the Network to access business opportunities with other large firms operating in the country.


Ms. Yolanda Nunes of Flor Real, a founding member of the Mozambique Business Network, noted, "APDF's credibility within the Mozambique business environment has helped secure high caliber companies to present at the fora -a vital ingredient to success of the Network.” She added, “ Due to APDF's assistance, today the Mozambique Business Network is independently managed and financed by its members, creating linkages opportunities for the long term.


Richard Ranken, IFC director for Sub-Saharan Africa, added, “New business opportunities that the APDF/Mozal linkages program has helped nurture, demonstrates the long term developmental impact that IFC’s linkages programs can have in Africa. Through APDF, our goal is to continue supporting linkages between local SMEs and large scale enterprises in the region.”



Note to Editors
: For background information on IFC’s linkages programs and investments in the Mozal aluminum plant, see:

       
Mozambique—IFC Builds Skills of Small Firms Working with Mozal Aluminum Smelter
       
Mozambique—IFC Helps Mozal Expand Successful SME Linkages Program to Daily    Operations
       
IFC Expands Linkages with Local Communities to Strengthen Mozal Aluminum Smelter Investment in Mozambique
       
IFC Invests in Mozal II-Expansion of Aluminum Smelter in Mozambique
       
IFC INVESTS IN MOZAMBIQUE ALUMINUM SMELTER


The mission of IFC (
www.ifc.org) is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing 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 FY04, IFC has committed more than $44 billion of its own funds and arranged $23 billion in syndications for 3,143 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio as of FY04 was $17.9 billion for its own account and $5.5 billion held for participants in loan syndications.