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Belgrade, Serbia, June 22, 2012
—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing Société Générale Srbija with a €70 million loan to increase access to finance for Serbian agribusinesses, supporting economic growth, employment and exports.
The loan is part of IFC’s strategy to strengthen the region’s banking sector and support the country’s economic recovery by boosting lending to the agribusiness sector. In Serbia, about 45 percent of the population lives in rural areas and about one-third rely on agriculture for their livelihood. In 2010, IFC also approved a €40 million agribusiness loan to Société Générale in Serbia.
“Société Générale Srbija has a strategic partnership with IFC and we are working together to increase lending to agribusinesses in Serbia,” said Mr. Gilles Verseils, Vice-President of the Executive Board of Société Générale Srbija.
Agriculture is a key part of Serbia’s economy, accounting for about 20 percent of gross domestic product. In 2011, Serbia’s total agricultural exports increased by 20 percent year-on-year, reaching $2.8 billion (€2.2 billion).
“We are working with Société Générale to ensure that finance continues to flow to agricultural producers that need it,” said Tomasz Telma, IFC Director for Europe and Central Asia. “IFC’s loan will increase funding to agribusiness, which generates significant exports and employment opportunities in Serbia.”
Serbia became a member of IFC in 2001. Today, IFC's investment portfolio in Serbia stands at €681 million ($861 million), including financing mobilized from other partners. Through its advisory services, IFC aims to improve the country’s investment climate, increase the use of renewable energy, strengthen corporate governance, and attract private sector participation in the development of infrastructure projects.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, providing advisory services to businesses and governments, and mobilizing capital in the international financial markets. In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty across the globe, we helped our clients create jobs, strengthen environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities—all while driving our investments to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion. For more information, visit
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