Washington, D.C., May 13, 2003—The International
Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm of the World Bank Group,
announced today that it is providing Financial Bank Chad with a euro 1
million four-year guaranty facility—the SME Credit Facility—to provide
long-term funding for small and medium businesses in Chad.
The facility is part of the Chad SME Initiative launched by IFC following
the World Bank Group’s investment in the $3.7 billion Chad-Cameroon Petroleum
Development and Pipeline Project that has already generated employment
for more than 12,000 people, about $400 million in infrastructure improvements
benefiting small and medium businesses, and more than $410 million in local
The Chad SME Initiative complements the work of the pipeline’s sponsors,
increases the participation of local enterprises in economic activity generated
by the pipeline, and helps to better prepare local businesses for the new
economy the project is creating. Assistance to small businesses includes
providing financing opportunities in a country where financing is usually
unavailable for periods of longer than a year, providing technical assistance,
creating agribusinesses, broadening access to information, and setting
up a business hive.
According to Harold Rosen, the World Bank Group’s Director for Small and
Medium Enterprises, “The SME Credit Facility is an important element in
our linkage activities in Chad where we are striving for a fully integrated
approach. An essential but perhaps less visible aspect of this facility
is the technical assistance or capacity building that will accompany it.”
IFC has assigned a senior international banker to work closely on-site
with Financial Bank Chad and has been training local consultants to provide
assistance to small businesses.
The facility also complements IFC’s investment in the newly created commercial
microfinance institution, FINADEV Chad, which has made over 3,400 loans
to date and is an additional step in IFC's work with Chad's financial sector.
IFC's mission 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. Since its founding in 1956 through the close of the last
fiscal year on June 30, 2002, IFC committed more than $34 billion of its
own funds and arranged $21 billion in syndications for 2,825 companies
in 140 developing countries. IFC's committed portfolio at the end of FY02
was $15.1 billion for its own account and $6.5 billion held for participants
in loan syndications.
IFC's small business linkages team works closely with the Corporation's
clients and partners worldwide to expand their local supply and distribution
chains, create more opportunities for small businesses, and assist in sustainable
community development efforts.