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09.06.2005 Business & Finance

IFC pursuing innovative solutions to investment in Ghana

GNA

Accra, June 9, GNA - Officials of the International Financial Corporation (IFC) an affiliate of the World Bank (WB) Group responsible for private sector support on Wednesday paid a working visit to the Ghana News Agency to familiarise itself with the work of the Agency and to explore areas of collaboration.

Ms Imoni L. Akpofure, IFC Country Manager for Ghana, said IFC's mandate was to offer sustainable economic development through financial and technical assistance to the Private Sector. "We pursue this goal through innovative solutions to the challenges of development investment in companies and financial institutions in emerging markets and build skills of existing business" she said. "IFC considers positive development impact an integral part of good business and focuses much effort on the countries with the greatest need for investment. "We recognise that economic growth is sustainable only if it is environmentally and socially sound and would help improve the quality of life for those living in developing countries."

Ms Akpofure, who is also responsible for coordination of IFC's strategy and business in Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Guinea-Conakry, Liberia, Niger, Sierra Leone and Togo, said the institution offered investment products, provided technical assistance and advisory services focusing mainly on the Private Sector and small and medium enterprises. "IFC is active in all commercial sectors in its developing member countries...funding is often accompanied by assistance on industry best practices, corporate governance, environmental and social issues, and links with local small business," she explained.

The IFC Country Manager said the institution had increased its support and focus on the frontier markets, with particular emphasis on small and medium enterprises, innovative financing mechanisms, South-to-South investments, long- term partnerships, infrastructure, health and education.

Mr Hannfried von Hindenburg, IFC Media and Marketing Account Manager for Corporate Relations, urged Ghanaian companies and individuals to study IFC's financial operations and the modalities for assessing loans and other investment packages. Mr Kafu Kofi Tsikata, Communication Specialists of the World Bank, Ghana Office, commended GNA for its role in promoting accurate, fair and balanced reportage in the country in spite of its logistical constraints and expressed the willingness of the Bank to provide training to GNA staff under its media capacity enhancement programme.

Nana Appau Duah, GNA Acting General Manager, said the Agency had been covering activities of IFC over the years and was very appreciative for the collaboration and the development of a working relationship between GNA and IFC. He expressed grave concern about logistical constraints of GNA especially at the regional and district levels where officials had to depend on commercial and other means of transportation to cover developmental events and stressed need to equip the Agency to improve on its performance.

He said GNA was founded by Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, the First President of Ghana, on the eve of Ghana's Independence to give Africans the opportunity to tell their own story and had since been committed to the principle of accuracy and fairness.

Mrs Bernadette Chinery-Hesse, GNA's Administrative Manager, commended IFC for establishing a working relationship with the Agency and the World Bank for offering to train GNA staff. Mr Francis Ameyibor, a Senior Reporter of the Agency facilitated the visit.

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