Byblos Bank signs financing agreement to set up new private bank in Sudan
An equity financing agreement for five million dollars was recently signed between Lebanon’s Byblos Bank and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Fund for International Development in order to support the establishment of a new private sector bank in the Sudan.
The new bank is being sponsored by Byblos Bank Africa. The Fund will participate in the $18 million capital of the new enterprise by means of a minority equity participation together with a subordinated loan. The project will provide immediate benefit by injecting new capital into the country’s banking sector, thus helping it meet the financing requirements of major companies.
Byblos Bank Africa will also support trade financing for Sudanese firms through lines of credit and pre-export facilities. Furthermore, by providing direct loans to the industrial sector, it will participate in the country’s reconstruction.
This loan represents the OPEC Fund’s second private sector operation in the Sudan. Assistance totaling $140 million has also been approved to the public sector in the form of balance of payments support, loans that financed commodity imports programs and project loans in the energy, transportation and agricultural sectors. The country has also benefited from Fund grants directed at a diverse range of projects and programs, from the construction of primary schools and rural water supply and sanitation schemes, to health care improvement, research studies and emergency assistance.
In addition, the Fund has helped the Sudan cover its subscription to the Common Fund for Commodities, the Amsterdam-based international organization aimed at achieving stable conditions in commodity trade. In 2000, an agreement for the encouragement and protection of investment was entered into between the Fund and the Government of the Sudan. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)
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