DUSHANBE, April 7, 2011, Asia-Plus – Ms. Rachel Kyte, Vice President, Business Advisory Services at the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, concluded her first official visit to Tajikistan on April 6 by emphasizing that IFC will continue to invest and provide advisory services to develop the private sector in Tajikistan, the IFC Dushanbe Office said.

During her visit, Ms. Kyte met with Prime Minister Oqil Oqilov, Economic Team of the Government of Tajikistan and representatives of United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, European Commission and State Secretariat for Economic Affairs.  During these meetings Ms. Kyte praised the strong partnership between IFC, Tajik government and donor community and discussed opportunities to further expand cooperation.

Prime Minister Oqilov expressed his appreciation to IFC for its close collaboration with the country’s government and private sector and highlighted the positive impact of IFC projects on the Tajikistani economy.

“Central Asia, including Tajikistan, is one of IFC’s corporate priorities,” said Ms. Rachel Kyte.  “We will continue to support SMEs through the financial sector and advisory services, and increase our investments in locally owned companies.”

In 2010 IFC helped the Ministry of Finance of Tajikistan develop the national standards of corporate governance in Tajikistan.  IFC also helped develop the Draft on Permits Law to the Tajik Parliament, which was submitted to the Tajik Parliament in March 2011.  Tajikistan Agribusiness Finance and Business Environment Project focuses on improving the regulatory and policy environment for agriculture and access to finance through a focus on agri-leasing and equipment finance.  These initiatives are funded by the government of Switzerland through the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, United Kingdom’s Department for International Development and European Union.

IFC has expanded its investment program in Tajikistan significantly in the last three years with commitments of $23 million in 11 projects in the financial markets, manufacturing, and infrastructure sectors.  IFC’s advisory program in the country is the largest among Central Asian countries.  Existing programs focus on developing financial markets through credit information systems, microfinance, agricultural finance, and leasing.  IFC’s corporate governance program promotes transparency and good governance in larger corporations.  IFC also is advising the government of Tajikistan on attracting private sector investment to develop its Konimansouri Kalon silver deposits.

In addition to investment services, IFC, in partnership with the Government of Switzerland and Department for International Development, is providing advisory services to help improve the investment climate, strengthen financial infrastructure and help local companies and banks become more competitive and attract investment.