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IFC Launches Bank Toolkit to Improve Access to Finance in Europe and Central Asia

Kiev, Ukraine, December 10, 2012 —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today launched a toolkit on non-performing loans and distressed assets to help improve banks’ capacity for managing their troubled assets, supporting improved access to finance for companies in Eastern Europe and Central Asia and contributing to economic recovery.
Following the 2008 global financial crisis and continued turbulence in the eurozone, IFC together with other international financial institutions is helping emerging markets in Europe and Central Asia rekindle growth by supporting private and public sector initiatives, including infrastructure, corporate investment and the financial sector.
The Distressed Asset Transfer Toolkit is a practical guide for financial institutions and potential investors on how to choose the most effective option for disposing troubled assets. It provides critical information on tax and legal implications, and case studies on working with distressed assets in Kazakhstan, Russia, and Ukraine. It also provides support to banks on how to maximize distressed asset portfolio value.  
Banks and investors across the region view the disposition of troubled assets unfavorably due to the lack of viable platforms and a transparent process for sales and valuations,” said Garth Bedford, Manager for IFC’s Financial Market Crisis Response Program in Europe and Central Asia. “We work to develop an enabling environment and promote best practices. Helping banks to clean non-performing loans from their portfolios is crucial for companies and individuals to have access to the finance they need.”
Non-performing loans have a dual effect on financial institutions, as there is no income from problematic loans and the capacity of further lending is reduced due to provisioning against them.
IFC launched the Financial Market Crisis Response program in 2009 in partnership with the Development Bank of Austria (OeEB),   the Swiss Confederation , Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland , and the Netherlands’ Agency for International Business and Cooperation . The program is supporting the financial institutions of Europe and Central Asia in their recovery from the global economic crisis by helping them improve risk management, and also helping to develop a market for distressed assets.  
The program has so far trained 2,550 bankers from 451 financial institutions across Europe and Central Asia, helped enact five amendments to national legislation, and provided in-depth advisory support to 41 banks.
About IFC
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, mobilizing capital in international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments. In FY12, our investments reached an all-time high of more than $20 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs, spark innovation, and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit .
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