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Industries > Global Manufacturing  > Sectors  > Chemicals and Fertilizers 

Chemicals and Fertilizers

IFC chemicals and fertilizers clients include a diverse range of local companies in emerging markets as well as multinationals investing in these markets. We tailor our products to meet a wide variety of client needs: greenfield and expansion projects, modernization programs, energy efficiency, acquisitions, financial restructuring, and improvements in environmental, health, and safety performance.   


Activities we finance: fertilizers and crop protection; petrochemicals; inorganics; speciality chemicals; refining and distribution.


Chemicals are ubiquitous:  modern life, from water & food supply, healthcare, housing to clothing would not be possible without chemicals.



Alignment with IFC's Strategic Objectives


  • Food Security: Pest & disease control (agrochemicals), nutrient optimization, food & water protection and distribution (bottles, containers, packaging, films) are examples where chemical products help increase and stabilize food production.
  • Job Creation: Creates direct and indirect jobs in the supply chain and downstream industries; triggers development of skilled labor locally.
  • Climate Change: The use of chemicals products in many industries such as energy efficiency and heat recovery, water conservation (waste water recovery and recycling) or solar power value chain, help improve environmental sustainability.
  • Adding value to natural resources: (such as gas, limestone etc.) before exporting it, thereby increasing foreign exchange earnings.
  • Infrastructure Development: Water purification chemicals, PVC pipes for water and gas distribution, disposable medical supplies & equipment, prefabricated housing materials (disaster relief & recovery), retail distribution of transportation fuels.


In FY13 only IFC's investments in the chemicals sector reached $1.5Bn, including $800M on own account.


Commitments by Sub-sector Commitments by Region



Key Portfolio Features


  • US$6.5 billions invested (own account)
  • 308 projects
  • 53 countries
  • Portfolio well diversified across sector and geographies, small and large projects


IFC Role and Additionality


  • Financial Risk Mitigation: Availability of long-term financing is critical given the cyclicality of the industry.
  • Resource Mobilization: Given the large capital investments typical of chemical sector projects, IFC plays a significant role mobilizing additional funding from other IFIs and commercial banks necessary to complete the investment plan.
  • Technical and Industry Expertise: IFC shares its technical and industry expertise and introduces international best practices to its clients.
  • Global, Regional, and Local Market Knowledge
  • Environmental and Social Standards/ Implementation
  • Energy & Water Efficiency and Renewable Energy: IFC helps its clients identify potential improvements to production processes that reduce resource use, prevent pollution, or treat wastewater.


Development Impacts

Investments in the Chemical Sector contribute to four current IFC Developmental Goals:

  • Reach to Farmers – Agrochemicals and fertilizers are key components of crop production, and reach both large and small-scale farmers. For instance, UPL (India), which produces 360,000 tons of agrochemical products annually, reaches about 5 million farmers domestically in 250,000 villages. Another IFC client, Engro Chemicals (Pakistan), reaches about 1.5 million farmers, while Abocol (Colombia) is estimated to reach about 600,000 farmers
  • SME Development – The chemical sector provides business opportunities to local micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) involved in transportation, distribution, and retail of chemical products
  • Climate Change – The use of chemical products in many industries leads to improved environmental sustainability. For instance, the use of engineered plastics in car manufacturing provides better performing and safer cars and results in fuel efficiency through lower car weight. A recent study shows a 6 - 8% increase in fuel economy for every 10% drop in car weight
  • Job Creation – direct and indirect job creation in the supply chain and downstream industry



Business Contacts:

Anil Chandramani, achandramani@ifc.org

Kremena Tenev, ktenev@ifc.org


Media Contact:

Elizabeth Price, eprice@ifc.org




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