WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 10—The International
Finance Corporation (IFC) has approved loans and equity investments totaling
US$4.3 million for nine projects in Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Malawi,
Nigeria, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Zambia.
All of the projects will be financed through IFC's Africa Enterprise Fund
(AEF), which supports small and medium companies undertaking projects with
costs between US$250,000 and US$5 million. IFC, a member of the World Bank
Group, is the largest multilateral source of financing for private sector
projects in developing countries.
IFC SUPPORTS AGRIBUSINESS IN COTE D'IVOIRE AND GUINEA
IFC has approved a loan of US$500,0000 for Berdam International, an Ivoirian
poultry farm, which produces both chickens and chicken feed for rural farmers.
The IFC financing will be used to rehabilitate the farm's feedmill, construct
storage facilities and an office building, and establish new hatcheries
and incubators. Berdam's locally supplied chicken feed is expected to increase
chicken farming activities in the interior of Cote d'Ivoire.
Agro Investment Company, a Guinean agribusiness firm, is also to receive
IFC financing in the form of a French Franc 1.2 million loan (US$220,000
equivalent). Agro, which produces melon and watermelon for export to European
markets during the off season, is modernizing its irrigation system by
upgrading to a more efficient drip program. The new technology will increase
the farm's production and improve the quality of its produce.
GHANAIAN TECHNOLOGY FIRM TO RECEIVE US$670,000
A US$670,000 loan has been approved by IFC for Network Computer Systems
Ltd., an information technology services company based in Accra. The company
will use the IFC financing to expand and upgrade its electronic and Internet
services. Network Computer Systems will introduce an Electronic Data Interchange
service to provide links for business-to-business electronic commerce,
expand its Internet subscriber base, and create private data networks.
The expansion program is anticipated to help meet the growing demand for
efficient electronic communications by Ghanaian businesses.
US$307,000 APPROVED FOR APARTMENT COMPLEX IN MALAWI
IFC has approved a loan of US$307,000 for Ufulu Gardens, an apartment complex
in Lilongwe. The complex, which will have 17 fully furnished apartments,
will be geared primarily to short-term tenants either visiting or relocating
to Lilongwe or when current hotel accommodation is unavailable. The complex
will include a garden and recreational facilities. Ufulu Gardens is the
first complex of its type in Lilongwe.
NIGERIAN PRINTING COMPANY TO RECEIVE IFC LOAN
Minaj Printers Ltd. is a full service printing facility that produces annual
reports, brochures, calendars, greeting cards, and business forms for local
clients. The demand for local printing jobs has risen significantly in
the last few years as a result of developments in the stock markets and
recent privatizations of Nigerian state owned enterprises. Minaj will use
the IFC financing of US$500,000 to improve its printing technology and
expand its printing, light packaging and labeling services.
IFC APPROVES US$400,000 FOR TANZANIAN MINERAL WATER COMPANY
IFC has approved a US$400,000 loan to help establish Drop of Zanzibar,
a mineral water bottling plant and bottle manufacturing facility in Jendele
Village, 18 kilometers from Zanzibar City. Drop of Zanzibar will use fresh
underground spring water and market its products to both tourists and locals
consumers. The company is expected to employ approximately 40 people and
will support Tanzania's tourism industry by providing high quality drinking
US$650,000 APPROVED BY IFC FOR ZAMBIAN GEMSTONE COMPANY
IFC approved a loan of US$650,000 for the establishment of Premier Lapidary
Ltd., a company which will buy, cut, and polish rough gemstones. Premier
Lapidary will purchase the gemstones including emeralds, aquamarines, amethysts,
and tourmalines from local traders and from the main Zambian mines. The
stones will then be processed into facets, cabochons, and beads and exported
to the world market. The project is expected to contribute significantly
to exports, while providing more than 90 jobs.
ZIMBABWEAN SAFARI LODGE TO BENEFIT FROM IFC FINANCING
IFC has approved a loan of US$570,000 for the establishment of Inyathi
Valley Motel and Rest Camp in the Victoria Falls Area of Zimbabwe. Over
the past five years, growth in Zimbabwe's tourism sector has resulted in
an increase of visitors to the resorts of the Lake Kariba and Victoria
Falls. Inyathi Valley Motel will provide affordable accommodations for
budget travelers. The lodge will be developed on an 11 acre site on the
fringes of Victoria Falls town. When completed, it will have 17 chalets,
dormitory accommodations, and camping facilities.