IFC helps Azerbaijani banks increase small business access to finance
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct. 28 /Trend, N.Ismayilova/
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping bankers in Eastern Europe and Central Asia develop their operations and provide financial services to improve access to finance for small and medium enterprises, IFC said in a statement released on Thursday.
In collaboration with the governments of Japan and the Netherlands, IFC is training bankers on building sustainable small and medium banking operations. The training program, in Baku from October 25 to October 28, covers strategy and market segmentation, product design, credit risk management, and information management systems. It also includes a training-of-trainers component that will ensure sustainability of the training offering in local markets beyond IFC's workshop.
More than 35 bankers and trainers from 15 institutions in Azerbaijan are participating in the event, which is part of a training program developed by IFC's Global SME Banking Program to help banks in emerging markets target the small-business sector and build or expand this line of business.
"In the recovery after the global financial crisis, the SME sector plays a key role as a driver of economic growth, providing employment opportunities. IFC's SME Banking training program aims to help banks and bankers improve and strengthen access to finance for SMEs, thus leading to the development of more job opportunities for the economy", said Rolf Behrndt, IFC Regional Business Line Leader.
IFC also has conducted similar training sessions in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, the Caribbean, and East Asia and Pacific.