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IFC Helps East Asian Financial Institutions Address Risks in Response to Global Crisis


In Hanoi:
Chu Van Anh

Phone: +84 4 3824 7892 ext 608

E-mail:
canh1@ifc.org

In Hong Kong:

Andrew Mak

Phone: +852 2509 8110

E-mail:
amak@ifc.org


Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, April 24, 2009—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping banks in the East Asia and Pacific region improve their risk management by reviewing their business strategies and promoting good governance practices in response to the current global economic crisis.

At a one-day seminar organized today by IFC, senior management from regional and global banks, financial institutions, and sector advisors  shared their experiences on such topics as capital adequacy, asset-liability management, and operational, market, and credit risk. The seminar also covered risk-measurement methodologies that illustrated how best to assess vulnerabilities and identify and prioritize issues so that banks can be prepared to deal with the effects of the global crisis on local markets.


“Banks and financial institutions are constantly faced with risks – mostly financial – and must balance such risks as well as returns,” said Ho Huu Hanh, Director of the Ho Chi Minh City branch of State Bank of Vietnam. “The current economic downturn increases the critical urgency of risk management. We appreciate IFC’s efforts in organizing this seminar, and the opportunity it provides for senior management across the region to share experience and advice.”

IFC also works with banks to help them diversify and focus their strategies, thereby improving the product range available to the private sector, particularly micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). Improvements to internal procedures can result in more profitable MSMEs and retail banking for the individual institutions. Better understanding of client needs also helps banks reduce risk and improve portfolio quality and access to finance for MSMEs.


“The need for improving risk management has become much more eminent,” said Serge Devieux, IFC Senior Manager for Financial Markets. “Buoyant markets and complacency diverted attention from predictable cyclical corrections and their devastating impacts. We must re-think the way we do business and manage risks. There is a great call for instilling a risk culture as a top priority.”

IFC advises governments, private companies, and industry sectors on how to grow businesses sustainably and create a healthy investment climate. In Vietnam, IFC advisory services are delivered in partnership with Australia, Canada, Finland, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland.  For more information, visit
www.ifc.org/mekong.

About IFC

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 private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.