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IFC, USAID, Central Bank of Azerbaijan Help Expand Access to Finance for Businesses

Baku, Azerbaijan December 4, 2012 —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is partnering with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Central Bank of the Republic of Azerbaijan to make it easier for businesses, especially small enterprises, to access loans and other forms of financing.
IFC and its partners today hosted a conference in Baku to raise awareness about secured transactions, which allow companies to use movable assets – including inventory, accounts receivable, and equipment – as collateral for loans. That would make it easier for businesses which may not have assets like real estate to obtain financing, supporting economic development. The conference, which included participants from banks and microfinance institutions, comes as IFC and Azerbaijan’s central bank work on a draft law governing secured transactions.
"It is important for us to ensure the availability of financial products for businesses,” said Rena Melikova, Head of the Legal Department at the Central Bank of Azerbaijan. “That is why we have placed the utmost importance on developing an effective secured transaction law which will form a sound basis for a well-developed secured transaction system.”
Rolf Behrndt, IFC Regional Business Line Manager for Access to Finance in Europe and Central Asia, said, “A secured transaction law will provide transparent rules for creditors and will facilitate the mass use of movable properties as a collateral, thereby benefitting businesses and supporting economic growth in Azerbaijan.”
The initiative is part of the IFC Azerbaijan and Central Asia Financial Markets Infrastructure Project. Funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), it aims to strengthen the financial infrastructure in Azerbaijan. One of the main goals of this project is to develop a collateral registry system and thereby improve access to finance for entrepreneurs and small enterprises in the country.
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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