Dushanbe, Tajikistan, August 12, 2008—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, has announced an investment in Tojik
Sodirot Bank, an existing IFC portfolio client, to expand its leasing and
trade finance operations and increase financing for agriculture.
IFC will lend the bank $10 million,
with $6 million earmarked for loans to the agriculture industry and $4
million set aside for leasing. In addition, IFC will guarantee $5 million
of the bank’s trade finance loans to small and medium enterprises.
“Providing farmers with access to fair
and market-based funding is a priority for IFC, given the agriculture sector’s
importance for Tajikistan’s economy,” said Lars Thunell, IFC Executive
Vice President and CEO.
Potential borrowers include individual
farmers, farming cooperatives, and food processing companies. The bank
will use the $5 million trade finance portion to help smaller clients import
wheat, edible oils, and other food products and consumer staples. It
will also guarantee short-term pre-export advances from correspondent banks
for outward shipments of processed cotton.
The loan agreement was signed in Dushanbe
on June 30. Thunell will meet with the bank’s management during his upcoming
visit to Tajikistan on August 14.
Since April 2007, IFC has been providing
advisory services to help Tojik Sodirot Bank expand its cotton lending
operations in southern Tajikistan. The program has allowed it to approve
nearly $300,000 of loans to cotton farms in 2007. IFC has also provided
training, workshops, and targeted consultation on the development of leasing
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing
private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international
financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services
to businesses and governments. IFC’s vision is that people should have
the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07, IFC
committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through
syndications and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing
countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more
About Tojik Sodirot Bank
Tojik Sodirot Bonk is the third-largest
bank in terms of total assets and the second-largest bank in terms of total
capital in Tajikistan. TSB has a wide client base of private enterprises
in the trade, services, and industry sectors. It serves clients from
its headquarters in Dushanbe and 10 branches across the country. For more