WASHINGTON, June 28, 2013 – The World Bank Board of Directors today approved US$10 million IDA* grant to support Guinea’s efforts to support the development of micro, small and medium-size enterprises.
Today’s funds support the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Project designed to boost the establishment of firms with less than 100 employees that are engaged in work such as light manufacturing, farming, and producing processed goods including juices and fresh and canned fruits.
“Guinea’s government is committed to economic diversification yet the institutions aimed at supporting the private sector are limited or have just recently been established,” said Ousmane Diagana World Bank Country Director for Guinea. “We are delighted to support the creation of micro, small and medium-size businesses that will create formal jobs and bring income and food to the many impoverished people in Guinea.”
Today’s funds will help finance two regional Support Centers, with a focus on agroindustry and other sectors, and will provide services including technical support, marketing, and other business information and one-stop-shop registration services for the region. An additional Support Center in Conakry, Guinea’s capital, will focus on developing female-owned businesses engaged light manufacturing and other activities, as opposed to traditional women-dominated sectors such as commerce and retail.
The project also is designed to support the development of the private sector with steps to boost business registration, promote investment and improve access to credit.
“Today’s project will directly target small firms in rural areas, where the poverty rate in Guinea is as high 65 percent and affects almost 5 million people,” said Jean Michel N. Marchat, World Bank Task Team Leader for the project. “I look forward to supporting the effective implementation of this project by the Government of Guinea.”
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing loans (called “credits”) and grants for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 82 poorest countries, 40 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.5 billion people living on less than $2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 108 countries. Annual commitments have increased steadily and averaged about $15 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent of commitments going to Africa.