At­tract­ing In­vest­ment

Southasia - - Briefing -

The In­ter­na­tional Fi­nance Cor­po­ra­tion (IFC), a lend­ing win­dow of the World Bank, has re­it­er­ated its com­mit­ment to work with Nepal in ar­eas of de­vel­op­ment and in­vest­ment. A se­nior level del­e­ga­tion, in­clud­ing Lars Thunell, Ex­ec­u­tive Vice Pres­i­dent and Chief Ex­ec­u­tive of IFC, has been busy meet­ing with the Nepalese Prime Minster, Dr. Babu­ram Bhat­tarai as well as the fi­nance min­is­ter, cen­tral bank gov­er­nor as well as other gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials. The IFC con­sid­ers Nepal a strate­gi­cally im­por­tant player and has been ac­tive in the coun­try since 1970. Fol­low­ing a meet­ing with the Prime Min­is­ter, Thunell claimed with much en­thu­si­asm, “IFC sees great po­ten­tial in Nepal. We be­lieve that the coun­try can grow rapidly in the near fu­ture.”

IFC serves as an in­ter­na­tional fi­nance ad­vi­sor to the gov­ern­ment and as a fi­nancier to the pri­vate sec­tor, fo­cus­ing on in­fra­struc­ture, microfinance and fi­nan­cial sec­tors. Apart from es­sen­tial in­fra­struc­ture projects, in­clud­ing hy­dropower, IFC’S strate­gic agenda in Nepal in­cludes ac­cess to fi­nance for small and medium en­ter­prises (SMES) par­tic­u­larly for women en­trepreneurs, tourism and agribusi­ness.

In ex­ten­sive meet­ings with gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials, Thunell ex­plained IFC’S com­mit­ted port­fo­lio of $25 mil­lion for Nepal fo­cus­ing on re­build­ing in­fra­struc­ture, in­clud­ing power, air trans­port, bank­ing, microfinance and trade fi­nance.

The IFC del­e­ga­tion in­cluded South Asia di­rec­tor Thomas Daven­port, Asia in­fra­struc­ture di­rec­tor Anita Ge­orge and coun­try man­ager for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal Kyle Kel­hofer.

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