IFC, Azerbaijan to Expand Digital Financial Services in Nakhchivan Autonomous Re...

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Jul 2018
Azerbaijan, July, 20 2018 - The goal is to develop mobile money infrastructure by establishing data processing centers and bringing in mobile network operators, thus allowing rural residents to use mobile phones to perform financial services such as bill payments and money transfers. By 2020, IFC seeks to involve 2,400 mobile operator agents and 700,000 users to perform USD 14 million in cashless transactions.

The World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) recently began working with the government of Azerbaijan to implement a cashless payment system in the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, a self-governing territory in Azerbaijan. The effort, which is funded by the Swiss government’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), is part of IFC’s Electronic and Digital Financial Services (EDFS) Project in Azerbaijan and Central Asia, which IFC approved in 2016 and first launched in Tajikistan. EDFS has a total budget of USD 3 million, and its project partners are the Central Bank of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan’s Financial Market Control Chamber, the National Bank of Kyrgyz Republic and the National Bank of Tajikistan.

The goal is to develop mobile money infrastructure by establishing data processing centers and bringing in mobile network operators, thus allowing rural residents to use mobile phones to perform financial services such as bill payments and money transfers. By 2020, IFC seeks to involve 2,400 mobile operator agents and 700,000 users to perform USD 14 million in cashless transactions.

SECO is an agency of Switzerland’s government that is responsible for the planning and implementation of economic and trade policy measures relating to developing countries. SECO aims to integrate these countries more fully into the global economy and promote their sustainable economic growth, thus contributing to poverty reduction. SECO’s priorities include creating stable economic conditions, competitiveness, trade diversification, basic infrastructure, and domestic and foreign investment, with an emphasis on energy, environmental and climate issues. As of 2017, SECO had an annual budget of CHF 440 million (USD 440 million).

IFC offers loans, equity investments, advisory services and technical assistance to private companies with the intent of alleviating poverty and promoting open and competitive markets in developing countries. IFC has 184 member countries, and it reports total assets of USD 93 billion as of June 2017. During the year ending that month, it disbursed a total of USD 10 billion and earned return on assets of 1.6 percent and return on equity of of 5.9 percent. Azerbaijan has been a member country of IFC since 1995. Since then, IFC has disbursed USD 473 million to 56 projects across the financial services, infrastructure and manufacturing sectors.

The World Bank Group is a multilateral organization whose goal is “to end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity in a sustainable way.” As of 2018, it has 189 member nations. The group encompasses (1) the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the International Development Association, which make up the World Bank; (2) IFC; (3) the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency; and (4) the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. During 2017, the World Bank Group disbursed a total of USD 44 billion.



Source : MicroCapital
 

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