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IFC Shares Expertise and Knowledge to Support Microfinance in the Pacific


Port Vila, Vanuatu - IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, will share its global expertise and regional experience in developing sustainable solutions to help increase access to finance for micro and small business owners in the Pacific.

IFC experts will discuss global trends in microfinance, including the role of women, ways to overcome the challenges of distributing microfinance, and risk management practices during the IFC-sponsored Pacific Microfinance Week 2011, which starts tomorrow in Vanuatu.

“IFC is unique in that we can draw on our global expertise to help local microfinance institutions strengthen operations and use innovative technological solutions to service more clients, particularly in hard to reach areas,” said Matt Gamser, IFC’s Regional Access to Finance Manager in East Asia and the Pacific. “Assisting institutions to become commercially viable makes it possible for them to attract the private capital needed to scale up and respond to unmet demand.”

Through the Australian government-supported Pacific Microfinance Initiative, IFC is helping expand access to loans, savings, and insurance products in Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Pacific Islands, particularly for women, rural households, and enterprises. The program focuses on improving the ability of microfinance institutions and other financial service providers to efficiently deliver financial services to Pacific Island communities lacking access to basic financial services.

“We work with banks and other financial services providers to create sustainable microfinance services, providing entrepreneurs with access to financial services to fulfill their business potential and build a better life,” said Deva de Silva, IFC’s Access to Finance Program Manager for the Pacific.

IFC is the World Bank Group’s lead investor in microfinance and is one of the leading multilateral investors in terms of outreach to microfinance institutions, working with more than 100 institutions in over 60 countries. As of June 2010, IFC’s investee clients had an outstanding portfolio of around $8.5 million microloans, worth $11 billion.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, providing advisory services to businesses and governments, and mobilizing capital in the international financial markets. In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty across the globe, we helped our clients create jobs, strengthen environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities—all while driving our investments to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion. For more information, visit

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