Boosted by a $1.3 million IFC loan, LLC Amiri began operations at its confectionery plant in Dushanbe, the Tajikistan capital, in 2011. Just three years later, Amiri leads the domestic market with a diverse product range of more than 40 chocolates and sweets.
“Previously, delicious, high quality sweets were unavailable in the local market, we had to import them. The price was high, which prevented many people from buying those sweets,” said Saida Mirozorova, director of Amiri. "The IFC loan helped us purchase modern, high-tech equipment, enabling us to produce caramels and chocolate and become Tajikistan’s leading sweets producer. Now we’re able to compete with imported brands.”
Private sector development is a World Bank Group priority in Tajikistan, where the group is helping the government improve the investment climate and create greater opportunities for businesses. The new Country Partnership Strategy for Tajikistan aims to expand opportunities for individuals and private businesses and provide the foundation for a new growth model focused on exports, rather than imports – which is sweet news for Amiri.
"Supporting private businesses like Amiri, we want to spur faster growth and more innovation in the private sector which is critical to Tajikistan’s development and in line with the World Bank Group's overall mission to reduce poverty and promote economic growth and shared prosperity in Tajikistan,” said Christopher Miller, Country Officer for IFC.
In addition to the loan, IFC helped Amiri, one of the Tajero group of companies, an importer and distributor of food products in Tajikistan, enhance its environmental and social standards and disseminate successful production practices in the local market. IFC advised Amiri on building a sound corporate governance structure by developing internal regulations and strengthening strategic planning and internal control procedures. IFC will also provide training to implement international standards for resource efficiency, quality and safety.
The company produces 80 tons of sweets every month, and, thanks to rising demand and increasing market share, plans to accelerate production to 100 tons per month by the year’s end. As part of those plans, the company is preparing to open an additional shop, which will add 30 jobs to Amiri’s existing 70. The company hopes to construct another confectionery plant in the next five years and begin to export its products to neighboring countries.