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Sub-Saharan Africa

IFC and SECO in Sub-Saharan Africa

Partners in Private Sector Development 

The Swiss government, financial institutions, and corporations are among IFC’s most important global partners. Sharing the goal of sustainable poverty reduction, they complement each other’s products, services and skills, and work together to achieve agreed business and development results.

Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is the second largest donor to IFC Advisory Services in Sub-Saharan Africa. Over the last seven years, SECO has provided support more than $32.1 million to programs in the region, including $14.9 million in the last two years alone.  

Access to Finance

IFC’s Global Credit Bureau Program’s partnership with SECO supports the development of private credit reporting in Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. IFC recently supported the launch of Ghana’s first private credit bureau, facilitated a review of the legal and regulatory framework in Mozambique, and formalized an agreement with the Central Bank of Tanzania and the Tanzania Bankers Association to implement a private credit reporting system. 



SECO has also been supporting the Sub-Saharan Africa Leasing Program which aims to increase the volume of lease transactions in twelve African countries. IFC recently supported the drafting of a leasing law in Guinea, which was a passed by the parliament and launched an operational manual for leasing practitioners across the world in Ghana.


Other programs supported by SECO include the Mobile Money Program, which aims to increase access to financial services for unbanked people in underserved markets in Madagascar, Nigeria, and South Africa; and the Climate Change Investment Program in South Africa was developed which aims to catalyze markets for sustainable energy finance and facilitate private sector investment in cleaner production, energy efficiency, and renewable energy projects.




Investment Climate

SECO is an important donor to IFC’s investment climate reform programs which are designed to help the private sector by advising governments on reforming laws and the regulatory environment to help facilitate investment and stimulate further economic growth. The programs encompass a broad range of reform initiatives, including encouraging public-private dialogue and advising governments on legal and regulatory changes that will help improve their countries’ rankings in the World Bank Group’s annual Doing Business report.

Sustainable Business Advisory

SECO has supported IFC’s SME programs to promote sustainable businesses. In Mozambique, SECO supported creation of a for a standalone and sustainable financial intermediary for improved access to finance for SMEs, including the development and finance of a solid portfolio of initial SMEs and the improved capacity and availability of technical assistance providers.

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