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Baku, Azerbaijan, June 10, 2014—
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Azerbaijan’s State Agency of Alternative and Renewable Energy Sources (AREA) held a forum today to promote energy efficiency investment to help small and medium enterprises improve efficiency and reduce costs.
IFC and AREA organized a roundtable forum in Baku with representatives of domestic businesses, government agencies, international financial institutions, and vendors of energy efficient equipment. Discussions touched on the latest energy-saving technologies, why spending on energy efficiency is good business, and the best ways to boost energy efficiency and competitiveness.
“Until recently the main focus for energy efficiency in Azerbaijan was in renewables, oil, electricity, and construction,” said Jamil Melikov, Deputy Head of Staff at AREA. “However, the potential for small and medium enterprises is significant. Therefore it is very important to help them productively operate in this sphere.”
Aliya Azimova, IFC Country Representative in Azerbaijan, said: “A growing body of evidence indicates that investing in energy efficiency can help businesses reduce costs significantly. We believe that helping private companies in Azerbaijan become more efficient can bring economic benefits for the country.”
A variety of Azerbaijani businesses attended the event, including energy firms, developers, food producers, agricultural companies, and green housing equipment installers. Azerbaijan’s Bank Respublika highlighted an energy efficiency financing program it is developing with IFC. The initiative is part of IFC’s Sustainable Energy Finance Program in Europe and Central Asia, which is being implemented in partnership with Austria’s Federal Ministry of Finance.
Azerbaijan became a member of IFC in 1995. Since then, IFC has invested more than $412 million in the country and mobilized nearly $73 million from other lenders. The investments cover 73 projects in the financial services, infrastructure, and manufacturing sectors. IFC has also implemented advisory projects focused on private sector development. In addition, the State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan has committed $350 million to three funds managed by the IFC Asset Management Company, which invests alongside IFC in private sector projects in emerging markets.
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 more than 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. In FY13, our investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $25 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit
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