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IFC Helps Improve Access to Finance for Small Businesses in Azerbaijan

Baku, Azerbaijan, December 15, 2014— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is partnering with the Azerbaijan Bank Training Centre and Azerbaijan Risk Professionals Association to improve access to credit for small businesses and help them grow.
IFC Azerbaijan-Central Asia Financial Markets Infrastructure Project, funded by Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), and the Azerbaijan Bank Training Centre are joining forces to train credit officers and appraisers of movable collateral, who will then be certified by the Azerbaijan Risk Professionals Association. Many small businesses lack collateral in the form of land or buildings to secure a loan but could use movable collateral, which includes inventory, accounts receivable and equipment, instead. However, a lack of capacity to evaluate such assets has proved a challenge in Azerbaijan.
“Access to finance is critical to private sector growth, but the availability of financial resources in the banking system is often not the only challenge. IFC and its partners in Azerbaijan are now creating a new framework in the collateral assessment market to support businesses and spur economic growth,” said Aliya Azimova, IFC Country Representative in Azerbaijan.
IFC is also working with Azerbaijan’s Central Bank on a draft law governing secured transactions loan or credit transactions in which the lender acquires a security interest in collateral owned by the borrower. A special working group including the relevant government agencies has started preparing for the process by discussing the roles and responsibilities of all agencies involved in such transactions.
Azerbaijan became a member of IFC in 1995. Since then, IFC has invested more than $414 million in the country and mobilized $73 million from other lenders. IFC has also implemented a number of advisory projects focused on private sector development.
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in about 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. In FY14, we provided more than $22 billion in financing to improve lives in developing countries and tackle the most urgent challenges of development. For more information, visit
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