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IFC Finances Base Metal Exploration in Zambia to Foster Economic Growth, Create Jobs

Johannesburg, South Africa, July 2, 2009 —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, will invest up to $15 million in the equity of Kiwara to help the company explore and develop mineral deposits in Zambia, helping create jobs and supporting the country’s economic growth.
Kiwara, which is listed in London and Johannesburg, will use the funds to finance copper and nickel exploration and feasibility studies in Northwest Zambia. IFC will also work with the company to ensure that exploration and any subsequent mine development is carried out in an environmentally and socially sustainable manner.
“Developing mineral deposits in Zambia will enhance the country’s economic growth, contribute to fiscal revenues, and promote increased investment in regional infrastructure,” said Kiwara’s Chief Executive Officer Peter Vivian-Neal. “Our partnership will enable Kiwara to benefit from IFC’s global expertise to implement best practices in our exploration and mining operations.”
IFC and Kiwara will also discuss how the mining company can participate in IFC’s linkages program in Zambia, which seeks to integrate local suppliers more fully into mining operations in the Copperbelt region.
“IFC’s investment in Kiwara demonstrates our commitment to supporting projects in regions where economic growth is most needed and that are environmentally and socially sustainable,” said Saleem Karimjee, IFC Country Manager for Southern Africa. “IFC’s investment and Kiwara’s potential participation in IFC’s program to support small and medium enterprises linked to mining is the start of a partnership that will increase economic growth and create more opportunities for Zambians.”
Zambia's mining sector has suffered due to the sharp fall in commodity prices, especially copper. The government has tried to revitalize the sector by reducing taxes to attract and retain foreign investment. IFC’s investment in Kiwara will support the government’s efforts by helping promote Zambia as an attractive destination for mining investments.
The World Bank Group is also working with Zambia’s government to improve governance of the mining sector and increase transparency on how the sector’s revenues are used. The collaboration aims to ensure that Zambia’s mining sector, a critical part of the economy, is developed in an environmentally and socially sustainable manner.
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit .