IFC and Zemen Bank Partner to Strengthen Trade Finance in Ethiopia

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, February 22, 2024—IFC today welcomed Ethiopia's Zemen Bank as the newest member of its Global Trade Finance Program (GTFP) and provided the bank with a trade finance facility to support Ethiopian exports and imports.

IFC's $30 million trade finance facility guarantee will help strengthen Zemen Bank's trade finance operations and assist in developing new trade partnerships for businesses in Ethiopia.

"Zemen Bank has been taking different impactful initiatives since its establishment, such as this one, aimed at facilitating the financing of vital trade in goods and fostering the establishment of new trading alliances for Ethiopia. Concurrently, the program will significantly boost trade finance for numerous import-export enterprises, particularly during periods of global economic volatility," said Ato Dereje, CEO of Zemen Bank.

IFC's trade financing is also part of its $1 billion Africa Trade and Supply Chain Finance Program (ATRI), which is supporting Africa's regional trade development and helping to reduce the continent's reliance on imports. IFC will complement the trade finance facility with an advisory services project to boost the bank's credit and risk management and SME lending work.

"Increasing access to trade finance is critical to boosting trade in Africa. Our partnership with Zemen Bank through IFC's Global Trade Finance program will contribute to strengthening Ethiopia's ability to finance essential trade of goods and open the door to new trading partnerships for the country," said Madalo Minofu, IFC Country Manager for Ethiopia.

IFC's GTFP extends and complements the capacity of banks to deliver trade financing by providing risk mitigation in new or challenging markets where trade lines may be constrained. Under the GTFP, IFC has issued guarantees for more than $100 billion globally. In the 2023 financial year alone, IFC issued $9.1 billion, of which $3.5 billion was in Africa.

IFC is committed to supporting Ethiopia's private sector growth, which is focused on strengthening agribusiness value chains, supporting the growth of manufacturing, and increasing access to digital connectivity. Over the past five years, IFC has invested and mobilized more than $105 million to support Ethiopia's agribusiness, manufacturing, and financial sectors.


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