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IFC OFFICIAL TO VISIT CAPE VERDE


L. Joseph
Phone: (202) 473-7700
Fax: (202) 676-0365



WASHINGTON, D.C., Aug. 24 -- Mr. Bernard Pasquier, Manager, Africa Department of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) will visit Cape Verde on a promotion mission from August 26 to 30, 1995.


In Cape Verde, Mr. Pasquier will meet with potential clients and with Government officials to discuss the priorities of the country and the role of the private sector. Mr. Pasquier will review IFC's existing investments and will also participate in the production of a video on the Africa Enterprise Fund (AEF), a special facility set up by IFC to provide financing to small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs). The AEF has had a significant developmental impact on the region. The video will be used as promotional support for the development of SMEs in Africa through the AEF.


SMEs constitute the central element of IFC's strategy in Cape Verde where the Corporation is looking at export-oriented light industries and services as well as the financial sector. IFC is also assisting the Government in its efforts to privatize and further liberalize the economy. IFC covers Cape Verde from its Western Africa regional office in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.


IFC has invested in two projects in Cape Verde, a shoe factory and an hotel. IFC provided a loan of US$1 million to Growela to set up a US$4 million manufacturing facility to produce about 400,000 pairs of shoes per year for export to Europe. The project has generated local employment for over 200 persons.


IFC has also provided a US$0.9 million loan to build a 50-room four-star hotel in Praia, the capital of Cape Verde, which lacks hotel accommodation of an international standard. The total project cost is estimated at about US$4.2 million. The hotel expects to generate local employment and foreign exchange earnings of about US$1.3 million.


IFC is a member of the World Bank Group and is the largest multilateral source of equity and loan financing for private sector projects in developing countries.