Bamako, Mali, June 17, 2010—Lars
Thunell, Executive Vice President and CEO of IFC, a member of the World
Bank Group, today said that IFC is committed to increasing its collaboration
with the World Bank and other development partners to support sustainable
economic growth in Mali.
Thunell was speaking during a visit
to Mali, where he met private sector clients and government official including
President Amadou Toumani Touré, Prime Minister Modibo Sidibé, and Minister
of the Economy and Finance Sanoussi Touré.
Thunell also attended talks with other
World Bank Group officials and donors on replenishing funds for the International
Development Agency, a part of the World Bank that aims to reduce poverty
in the world’s poorest countries by providing interest-free credit and
grants or programs that boost economic growth, recue inequalities, and
improve people’s living conditions.
“Amid continued uncertainty about the
global economic outlook, it is more important than ever to deepen our support
for sustainable economic growth in the poorest countries,” Thunell said.
“IFC is committed to strengthen our collaboration with other members of
the World Bank Group, as well as other partners, so we can create more
opportunity for the people of Mali.”
IFC’s strategy in Mali focuses on strengthening
the financial sector so that it can better support smaller businesses;
helping the country diversify its economy by promoting industries such
as agribusiness, manufacturing, and tourism; and working to improve Mali’s
infrastructure. As of June 15, 2010, IFC’s committed portfolio in
Mali totaled $32 million, including investments in the manufacturing, agribusiness,
and financial sectors.
Many of IFC’s projects in Mali involve
close collaboration with partners. For example, IFC is collaborating with
the government of Mali and the International Development Agency to provide
credit and Advisory Services to micro, small, and medium enterprise. The
program is helping Bank of Africa Mali extend more loans to smaller businesses,
a key constraint to the private sector. IFC is also working with
the World Bank to help Mali’s government improve its investment climate,
which will help ease some of the barriers faced by the country’s private
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to
escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic
growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development,
mobilizing capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk
mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments
totaled $14.4 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing
countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.