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IFC INVESTS US$3.9 MILLION IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA


L. Joseph
Phone:(202) 473-7700
Fax:(202) 974-4384
E-mail:ljoseph@ifc.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., February 5, 1999 --- International Finance Corporation Executive Vice President Peter Woicke signed agreements in Abidjan today to invest a total of $3.9 million in two companies in West Africa.  Mr. Woicke is in Cote d'Ivoire as part of a five-nation visit to sub-Saharan Africa.

SIECO, Mali Receives $500,000 Investment


IFC approved a guarantee to enable Société Industrielle de'Emballage et de Conditionnement SA (SIECO) of Mali -- a producer of liquid cleaner, detergent, and plastic bottles -- to obtain a local currency loan of CFAF 300 million (US$500,000).  The project will enable SIECO to increase production efficiency and set up a factory to manufacture plastic bags for the local market.  The company will expand and relocate to a larger site in the industrial zone of Bamako.  At total capacity, SIECO will produce 578 tons of plastic bags and one million plastic bottles per year.  Plant and equipment will be imported from Taiwan and Italy.  SIECO is owned by Mr. Mohammed Ghassane Fakhry, an agricultural engineer, who has experience in the plastics industry.


Tropical Rubber, Côte d'Ivoire Receives $3.4 Million Investment


IFC is providing a loan of $3.4 million to Tropical Rubber Côte d'Ivoire (TRCI), a $12.3 million project involving privatization of a rubber plantation on the 30-year old Anguédedou Estate near Abidjan.  The project includes rehabilitation of about 1,000 hectares of old plantations as well as construction of a new rubber processing facility with a capacity of 80 tons per day for small-hold rubber farms in the area.  Other benefits include employment and foreign exchange generation and provision of extension services to small-hold farmers in the area.  In addition, the project will manage a school and dispensary for staff.  Major shareholders include Saphic of Côte d'Ivoire, owned by medium-sized rubber planters from the Anguédedou area; GMG Investment (Pte) Ltd., a subsidiary of the Indonesian conglomerate Panwell Group, which has interests in manufacturing, banking, and trading; and the Government of Côte d'Ivoire.


IFC, part of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing world by financing private sector investments, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets, and providing technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.