Creating Opportunity Where It's Needed Most
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Europe, Middle East & North Africa


Thought Leadership


An in-depth look at the development challenges facing 

the region and how they can be tackled.


 


 


 


 

The Potential of Renewable Energy in MENA


 

Many governments in the region have recently set ambitious 

targets to revise their energy strategy and are increasingly 

turning to renewable energy. They have also started implementing 

the regulatory reforms required to achieve these targets. 

According to the World Energy Outlook 2012, published by the Paris-based 

International Energy Agency, the share of renewable energy in total 

power generation in the Middle East is set to increase from the 2 percent 

seen in 2010, to 12 percent by 2035.


 

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Smaller Business Vital for Growth

 

The role of the micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) 

sector cannot be over emphasized in terms of its contribution 

to GDP and employment generation, particularly in emerging 

economies. Studies indicate that formal SMEs contribute up to 

45 percent of employment and up to 33 percent of GDP in 

developing economies (IFC: Scaling-Up SME Access to Financial 

Services in the Developing World 2010). These numbers are 

significantly higher when taking into account the estimated 

contributions of SMEs operating in the informal sector. In high 

income countries, SMEs contribute nearly 64 percent to the 

GDP and 62 percent to employment.

 

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Private Sector Key to Developing Regional Infrastructure

 

A lack of employment opportunities is considered to be one 

of the major driving factors behind public disaffection in 

many countries across the region. In responding to these 

issues, and in order to address recent unrest, regional 

governments recognize the need to invest in infrastructure to 

improve the quality and availability of public services. 

In addition, infrastructure investments are considered to have 

a multiplier effect on economic activity by supporting job creation 

and promoting spill-over foreign direct investments.

 

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Creating Jobs in Pakistan


 

By looking at IFC and HBL’s contribution to job creation 

in Pakistan between 2009 and 2012, this study attempts 

to identify sectors that show potential for strong SME 

growth as well as to gain insights on how SMEs 

use loans to grow. The findings of this study may prove 

useful to inform the design and programming of future 

IFC operations, particularly at a time when a country faces 

slow growth, high unemployment, and declining SME 

financing as in the case of Pakistan in recent years. 

 

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Lebanon Depends on SMEs


 

The key objectives of this study are (i) to measure the job 

impact on SMEs from increased access to finance;

and (ii) to understand the broader development outcomes 

facilitated by engagements in the financial sector. 

The results are based on a survey implemented in March 2013 

which sampled 73 companies that received loans from

FRANSABANK during 2008 and 2011. The enterprises ranged 

from very small to medium firms including in the services, 

agribusiness, and manufacturing sectors across the 

five regions of Lebanon. 

 

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