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Baku, Azerbaijan, March 6, 2012
—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has helped launch a knowledge exchange network across Europe and Central Asia designed to enhance corporate governance standards and help companies improve their performance.
Representatives from consultancies, non-governmental organizations, and professional associations attended a two-day workshop in Baku that marked the launch of the network. The participants came from 10 countries across the Balkans, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and discussed international best practices in corporate governance.
“It is very interesting to see the different approaches that institutions take to this issue,” said Verica Hadzi-Vasileva Markovska, a board member of Macedonia’s Institute of Directors. “A lot remains to be done, but I see a strong commitment to promoting good governance across the region.”
Oliver Orton, head of IFC’s corporate governance program in Europe and Central Asia, said: “It is vitally important for companies to have a sound system of corporate governance in place. That will not only improve their performance, but also help firms attract investment, allowing them to grow and create new jobs.”
The Baku workshop, the first of its kind in Azerbaijan, was supported by Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). During the event, IFC introduced its corporate governance toolkit and publications providing guidance for implementing good corporate governance practices.
It was part of IFC’s efforts to improve corporate governance standards across Europe and Central Asia by working with the public and private sectors. In addition to Azerbaijan, corporate governance programs have also been implemented in the Balkans, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan and Tajikistan.
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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