International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank has said that the corporation’s total portfolio in Nigeria stood at 1.7 billion dollars (N334.87 billion). Mrs Eme Essien Lore, Country Manager, IFC Nigeria, made the disclosure in an interview with newsmen on Thursday in Lagos.
She said that the total portfolio was for IFC 2015 fiscal year from July 2014 to June 2015. Lore said that the amount was invested in key critical sectors of Nigeria such as infrastructure, commercial banks, microfinance, insurance, manufacturing, agribusiness, health and education.
“IFC total portfolio in Nigeria today stands at 1.7 billion dollars and our investment sectors include infrastructure, commercial banking, microfinance, insurance, manufacturing, agribusiness, health and education,’’ Lore said. The country manager told newsmen that the corporation would continue to invest in its key focus areas in the country to ensure growth and development.
“Going forward we will continue to invest in our key focus areas in the country,’’ she said. Lore said that IFC would support the country’s quest to move away from dependence on oil and gas. She stated that IFC would assist in developing infrastructure, especially power, through investments and advice that would help in attracting private investments.
According to her, infrastructure, especially power has been identified by the private sector in several surveys as the critical constraint to private sector development. Lore said that it would support the country’s quest to move away from dependence on oil and gas, adding that it would help to open up the agricultural sector for more private participation.
“Agriculture has been a critical contributor to the country’s GDP and could be said to be the largest employer in Nigeria, especially the rural poor. “So, we will help the Federal Government achieve its goal of diversifying the economy from the oil and gas sector by placing emphasis on supporting agribusiness,’’ Lore said.
She also said that the corporation would continue to invest in the financial sector so that they could support the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) sector. “At IFC, we believe one of the critical sectors that hold the key to achieving our goal of reducing poverty and shared prosperity is MSMES,’’ Lore said.