By Nawa Mutumweno – The International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank increased investments in sub-Saharan Africa to a record $2.4 billion in the year to the end June 2010 from $1.8 billion in 2009, the first time that the IFC’s yearly investments in the region surpassed $2 billion.
Apart from 31 countries in the region benefitting from this massive investment, the IFC also supported the mobilization of an additional $1.1 billion from other investors and approved 40 new advisory services projects during the period under review.
The organization, which extends development finance to the private sector in developing countries, indicated that its investments in the region should expand further in 2011, but at a slower pace.
“Through another record year, the IFC is demonstrating the enormous private potential in Africa and the continent’s readiness to attract more,” vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean, sub-Saharan Africa and Western Europe”, Thierry Tanoh said in a statement.
Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, Cote d’ Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Sao Tome and Principe, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda and Zambia were the recipient countries.
Its strategy in Africa would continue to emphasise initiatives to improve the investment climate, enhance support to small, micro and medium-sized enterprises and those that facilitated new projects in priority sectors such as infrastructure, healthcare and agribusiness.