Washington, D.C., March 25, 2021—Norfund today became the 35th development finance institution to join IFC’s Master Cooperation Agreement, paving the way for the two institutions to work together to boost private sector investments globally and catalyze jobs and economic growth.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, plays a key role in mobilizing private capital to accelerate development in emerging markets. Its Master Cooperation Agreement standardizes steps that lenders take when co-financing projects with IFC. This streamlined approach saves time and money for borrowers—private companies in emerging markets—and lenders. Lenders who adopt the agreement benefit from IFC's $16-billion loan-syndication platform, global presence, and expertise in deal-structuring and due diligence.
Owned and funded by the Norwegian government, Norfund provides equity capital and other risk capital to build sustainable businesses in developing countries. Norfund's mission is to create jobs and improve lives by investing in businesses that would not otherwise be developed because of the high risks involved, and that contribute to economic and social development through the direct and indirect jobs they provide, the goods and services they offer, and the taxes they pay.
By year end 2020, Norfund had committed investments totaling 28.352 million NOK in 170 projects. Norfund prioritizes investments in four investment areas aligned with the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals: clean energy, financial Institutions, green infrastructure, and scalable enterprises.
John Gandolfo, IFC's Vice President and Treasurer, said: "We are very pleased to sign this new agreement with Norfund as part of our commitment to catalyzing sustainable development globally through investment in clean energy and green projects, as well as financial institutions and sustainable agri-business in emerging markets. We are joining forces at a critical time, as we work to rebuild better after the COVID-19 pandemic".
Birgit Edlefsen, Senior Investment Manager, Norfund said: "Norfund is very excited to enter into the Master Cooperation Agreement with the IFC, which will enable us to boost our impact in the debt segment in an efficient way and with a great lead partner. We are looking forward to realizing the first financings together under the framework, which are even more critical in the current challenging circumstances caused by the pandemic."
IFC created the Master Cooperation Agreement in 2009, in response to calls by the Group of 20 nations for official finance institutions to collaborate more closely to help meet shortfalls in private sector financing during the global financial crisis. Since then, IFC has syndicated more than $26 billion in parallel loans for clients—nearly half of which has come from signatories. Click here for a full list of the signatories.
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities where they are needed most. In fiscal year 2019, we delivered more than $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
Norfund is the Norwegian Investment Fund for developing countries. Its mission is to create jobs and to improve lives by investing in businesses that drive sustainable development. Norfund is owned and funded by the Norwegian Government and is the Government´s most important tool for strengthening the private sector in developing countries, and for reducing poverty. For more information, visit www.norfund.no.