IFC Governance and Financial Sustainability

Select a Region Sub navigation page selecting option, jump to that section

Our Governance

In working to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity, IFC collaborates closely with other members of the World Bank Group.

The World Bank Group is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries. Established in 1944, its mission is to fight poverty with passion and professionalism, for lasting results.

The World Bank Group consists of five distinct yet complementary organizations:

The President of the World Bank Group is also President of IFC.

Articles of Agreement and By-Laws

Articles of Agreement (As amended through April 16, 2020)

Although part of the Bank Group, IFC is a separate legal entity with separate Articles of Agreement, share capital, financial structure, management, and staff. Membership in IFC is open only to member countries of the World Bank.

Download Articles of Agreement (PDF)

Also available in: عربي简体中文Español | Français日本語PortuguêsРусский

By-Laws (As amended through May 17, 2021)

In the event of a conflict between anything in these By-Laws and any provision or requirement of the Articles of Agreement, the Articles of Agreement shall prevail.

Download By-Laws (PDF)

Also available in: عربي | 简体中文 | Español | Français | 日本語 | Português | Русский

Disclaimer: The only official version of the IFC Articles of Agreement is the version in English that is actually signed by a member country.

Our Board

Established in 1956, IFC is owned by 186 member countries, a group that collectively determines our policies. Through a Board of Governors and a Board of Directors, our member countries guide IFC's programs and activities.

Each of our member countries appoints one governor and one alternate. Corporate powers are vested in the Board of Governors, which delegates most powers to a board of 25 directors. Voting power on issues brought before them is weighted according to the share capital each director represents.

The directors meet regularly at World Bank Group headquarters in Washington, D.C., where they review and decide on investments and provide overall strategic guidance to IFC management.

Financial Sustainability

By managing risks and effectively using our financial resources, we remain financially sustainable and maximize our development impact.

Sound risk management plays a crucial role in ensuring IFC’s ability to fulfill our development mandate. The very nature of IFC’s business, as a long-term investor in dynamic yet volatile emerging markets, exposes us to financial and operational risks.

Prudent risk management and a solid capital position enable us to preserve our financial strength and play a countercyclical role during times of economic and financial turmoil. In addition, IFC’s financial strength results in low borrowing costs, allowing us to provide affordable financing to our clients.

The soundness and quality of IFC’s risk management and financial position can be seen in our triple-A credit rating, which has been maintained since coverage began, in 1989.

Our thorough approach to risk management includes:

  • Rigorous and conservative capital adequacy, using more demanding standards than are required to maintain a triple-A credit rating;
  • Conservative portfolio diversification guidelines by company, sector, and region; and
  • Credit risk assessments and integrity due diligence for all investments.

Fostering Sustainable Development

Having a sound risk-management practices is also crucial to our clients across emerging markets, to ensure their long-term viability and competitiveness. Sustainable businesses generate jobs and create long-term opportunities for millions to escape poverty and improve their lives.

In addition to evaluating our clients’ environmental, social, and governance practices, IFC evaluates their financial risk management capabilities. We also offer risk-management products, or derivatives, to enable clients to hedge their interest rate, currency, or commodity price exposures.