The International Finance Corporation (IFC) a private sector arm of the World Bank working group in Sierra Leone has expressed their continued commitment and determination to create opportunities for people to escape poverty by supporting private sector development and economic growth.
IFC is mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments that can deliver a wide range of financial products and services in sectors that can have significant development impact especially in the areas of telecommunications financial services and infrastructure.
The government of Sierra Leone has requested IFC in partnership with DFID to advise it on appropriate actions to improve the investment climate and to also provide advice to support small and medium enterprise for the promotion of trade finance.
IFC consultant Peter Nuamah has said that they are currently focusing on two main advisory services programs in Sierra Leone to remove administrative barriers to investment (RABI) and the Conflict Affected States in Africa (CASA) initiative.
The RABI project is a phased multi year approach that seeks to strengthen the private sector by making it easier, better and faster to do business in Sierra Leone by creating an environment that will attract quality international investment to the country.
IFC advisory services include business start up procedure reforms, Tax and Custom Reform, Investment and Export Promotion, Tourism Investment Generation and Development Programs, creation of the Sierra Leone Business Forum and improvements in the annual doing business survey.
The IFC consultant Peter Nuamah also explained about their investment portfolio in Sierra Leone which consist of USD$25m investment to Zain Sierra Leone formally of celtel to help improve company operations and to enhance the quality of mobile access in the country.
IFC’s Global Trade Finance Program has provided partial guarantees to cover the payment risk of trade transactions with Sierra Leone Commercial Bank, Rokel Commercial Bank and Guaranty Trust Bank of USD$1m to each of the three banks.
Peter Nuamah also disclosed that IFC is in the process of finalizing an investment in the micro finance sector with Procredit Sierra Leone to include support for global manufacturing and services in agribusiness, health, education and financial market.