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IFC Advises Botswana on Establishing a Second National University


IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has signed an advisory services mandate with the government of Botswana to establish the country’s second national university through a public-private partnership. The project is expected to create 10,000 new places for students, increasing the country’s capacity to meet domestic demand by providing local education opportunities for many qualified students.

Honorable Jacob D. Nkate, Botswana’s Minister for Education, said, “The new university will help upgrade, expand, and diversify local tertiary education capacity to meet the growing demand for qualified engineering, science, and technology graduates in Botswana. IFC’s participation will help increase the credibility of this project among potential investors, while reinforcing the country’s commitment to establishing a university with high standards.”

Of an estimated 50 percent of secondary school students in Botswana who qualify for tertiary education, only 12 percent make that transition within the country’s borders. As a result, the government currently sponsors about 7,000 students to study outside the country, a trend that is increasingly unsustainable.

The Botswana International University of Science and Technology is expected to enroll up to 10,000 students a year by 2016. The university will be located in Palapye, 200 kilometers northwest of Gaborone. It will serve as a regional center of excellence, providing quality education to students from across southern Africa.

As transaction advisor, IFC will structure the project and attract private operators with the capacity to deliver and maintain the requisite university infrastructure. The investment costs are expected to be spread over the lifetime of the university.

“We are committed to helping the government of Botswana achieve its goal of nurturing the talent of its young people by establishing the Botswana International University of Science and Technology,” said David Donaldson, IFC Senior Manager. “IFC has a successful track record in implementing public-private partnerships that deliver development impact in health, education, and other social infrastructure.”


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