Niger

ICD and BSIC Niger cooperate to finance SMEs in #Niger

The Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) and BSIC Niger have entered into an agreement to finance SMEs in Niger. The line of financing agreement was signed for the amount of €9m under the Wakala structure. The collaboration will focus on developing SMEs, improving the living standard of the population by creating jobs, generating tax revenues for the government and promoting Islamic Banking in the country. Abakar Adoum, Managing Director of BSIC, said the signing of the agreement marked the beginning of a lasting partnership and SMEs will enjoy a mentoring that meets their needs at acceptable costs. SME clients will get access to a a 5-year line of financing. Adoum believes that other forms of partnership, like the opening of an Islamic window, will also develop in the near future.

Niger to set up 150 bln CFA franc debut sukuk programme

Niger's government will establish an Islamic bond programme worth 150 billion CFA francs ($260 million), permitting its first issue of sukuk, with assistance from the private sector arm of the Islamic Development Bank. Niger's sukuk would be issued over the next five years in two separate transactions worth 75 billion CFA francs each, the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) said. The government already has a number of projects that could be financed through sukuk, Amadou Boubacar Cisse, Niger's planning minister, was quoted. Niger would follow Senegal and South Africa, which issued sovereign sukuk for the first time last year; Ivory Coast has been considering a 200 billion CFA franc sukuk issue. Tunisia plans a debut sukuk issue in the third quarter of this year.

Islamic Development Bank loans $180 mln for Africa energy projects

The Islamic Development Bank has launched a programme to release $180 million in financing to six African countries for renewable energy projects. The new initiative, called Renewable Energy for Poverty Reduction, will target projects over the next three years to improve access to electricity in Africa's rural areas. Around $125 million have been committed by the bank and initial talks with potential partners such as the OPEC Fund for International Development have started to secure the rest. The initiative will focus on West Africa and projects in Burkina Faso have already been approved. Projects such as mini-grids and rooftop solar systems for Mali, Senegal, Niger and Nigeria are likely to follow and a sixth African country not yet determined.

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