Nigeria: IFC, MTN Partner On Job Creation

Feb 2007
Lagos, Nigeria, February, 28 2007 - The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has signed a Linkage Cooperation Agreement with MTN Nigeria Foundation for a joint project that will create opportunities for more than 1,000 rural based women in the country to earn income by reselling telephony services.

The corporation, which made this known in a statement, said the women will provide mobile phone service for a fee in local communities, establishing service at affordable prices to communities that presently have limited or no telephone access.

Under the agreement, IFC and MTN Nigeria Foundation will jointly design and scale up the rural telephony project. By offering advisory services, IFC will also provide capacity building support to participating nongovernmental organizations led by Growing Businesses Foundation and microfinance institutions.

Nigeria represents the first of four countries where IFC intends to support rural telephony penetration.

With funding support from the United States Trade and Development Agency, IFC will take the model developed in Nigeria to other markets.

MTN Nigeria Foundation Executive Director, Amina Oyagbola said, "We are confident that this partnership with IFC and rural based women will have sustainable development impact by leveraging the strengths of all stakeholders."

IFC Private Enterprise Partnership for Africa General Manager, Bernard Chider, said "IFC has a successful track record of helping clients to empower local communities by linking them to their supply chains. This is part of the added value that we bring to our clients."

MTN Nigeria has been an IFC client since 2003. To date, IFC has made total commitments of $135 million in financing to support MTN Nigeria's rollout in the country.

The MTN Nigeria Foundation was incorporated in 2004 by MTN Nigeria Communications Limited as the vehicle through which MTN implements its corporate social responsibility programmes.


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