IFC invests $175m in telecoms

Jan 2007
Nigeria , January, 24 2007 - The International Finance Corporation (IFC) says it invested $75 million in the telecommunications, and manufacturing sectors of the Nigerian economy between 2003 and 2005.

The Corporation said in a document made available to newsmen in Abuja that IFC provided $75 million loan to the Obajana Cement Plc in Kogi State.

It said the loan which was released in June 2005 was one of its largest investments in Nigeria outside the oil sector.

It said that MTN Nigeria also benefited from a N100 million investment for the expansion and improvement of its operations in the country.

“IFC’s investment was part of a $95 million financing package comprising of local currency syndicate that involved Nigerian banks, and the Standard Chartered Merchant Bank of UK among others.

“The transaction has been credited as bringing other international investors to Nigeria and deepening the country’s capital market, “ IFC said.

The Corporation also said the Obajana Cement project which is expected to come stream this, year would have the capacity to produce 4.4 million tonnes of cement annually.

It said the plant would include a 135 megawatt gas-fired power plant and a natural gas pipeline.

“In addition to improving the local availability of cement, the project will help promote investment in infrastructure, industry ,and the housing sector, thereby helping Nigeria diversify from oil.

Obajana Cement plant is a subsidiary of Dangote Industries Limited.

It said IFC was helping the Nigerian government to address the problem of access to micro finance to small enterprises by collaborating with Accion Micro Finance Company.

“Accion Finance, an indigenous finance company with IFC shareholding in collaboration with commercial banks is helping to provide finance to micro and small enterprise to grow the economy,” the Corporation said.

IFC said its co-investor in the initiative included Ecobank Nigeria, Zenith Bank, among others.

Source : The Tide Online

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