Victoria, Seychelles, April 29, 2014 - IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today signed cooperation agreement with the Central Bank of Seychelles to lay the foundation for leasing facilities to help small-scale entrepreneurs strengthen and expand their businesses.
Leasing is an innovative financing solution for small enterprises that often lack the credit history or sufficient collateral required by most banks to finance the necessary equipment to heighten productivity.
Caroline Abel, Governor of the Central Bank of the Republic of Seychelles, said, "Leasing is particularly useful as a financial instrument for small businesses in Africa because they often lack the credit history or sufficient collateral to access traditional forms of financing. Leasing also reduces the initial capital requirements for acquiring equipment."
IFC's Africa Leasing Facility assists in creating a legislative and regulatory environment favorable for leasing, provides capacity-building for leasing stakeholders, and mobilizes investment in the continent's leasing industry.
IFC Country Manager for Madagascar, Mauritius and Seychelles, Kailash Sharma Ramnauth, said, "Countries like Seychelles looking to strengthen their economies stand to benefit greatly when equipment is more accessible to its small business owners, especially in the agribusiness, mining and power sectors. With the necessary financial tools available to them, entrepreneurs in Seychelles have the capacity to play an important role in the country's future development."
Over the past five years, IFC's Africa Leasing Facility has trained more than 10,000 small business owners through almost 250 training sessions, assisted in the passage of 16 legal, regulatory and tax laws regarding leasing, and mobilized investment in five leasing projects in Sub-Saharan Africa worth almost $27 million.
The ALF II program is supported by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, SECO, Austria, Denmark, Japan, the Netherlands, and Sweden. For more information on IFC's Africa Leasing Facility, please visit: www.ifc.org/africaleasing
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in more than 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. In FY13, our investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $25 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs and tackle the world's most pressing development challenges. www.ifc.org