AfDB eases funding for small to mid-sized firms in Mauritania

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The African Development Bank (AfDB) and finance company, Mauritania Leasing, signed an agreement on 15 November in Dakar for a grant of USD 365,000 provided by the Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (FAPA) to help finance small and medium-sized enterprises in the country.

Mrs. Leila Mokaddem, the Resident Representative at the Senegal Regional Office, represented the AfDB  and Mr. Ebe Ould Ebe, Mauritania Leasing Executive, represented the partner at the ceremony.

FAPA’s technical assistance will help build Mauritania Leasing’s capacity in promoting the provision of sustainable, affordable and innovative leasing instruments to aid the development of Mauritanian SMEs in key sectors such as agro-industry, tourism, public works and transport. 

Mauritania Leasing, which performs operations on leases of real and personal property for industrial and professional customers, has already benefited from a USD 5 million line of credit from AfDB in 2009, helping SMEs to access to alternative financing in the country.

“FAPA’s technical assistance grant of USD 365,000 is designed as a complement to the line of credit and will allow Mauritania Leasing to strengthen its operations as leader in leasing provision and its catalytic role in funds mobilization for Small and Medium Enterprises projects in Mauritania”, said Mrs. Mokaddem.

FAPA has also supported infrastructure development through financing feasibility studies of the Rosso Bridge between Senegal and Mauritania and for the construction and operation of three power plants as part of the Organization for the Development of the Gambia River, for a total of USD 2 million.

AfDB’s active portfolio in Mauritania currently includes nine operations in the public sector for a total amount of USD 41 million and four private sector projects for a total amount of USD 190 million. Mining and private sector operations in Mauritania have recently increased significantly with the approval of a USD 177 million loan to the Société Nationale Industrielle et Minière (Extension project of GUELB II mine), and now they represent the bulk of AfDB interventions in Mauritania. The other sectors benefiting from the Bank’s support include the financial sector, including microfinance, agriculture and rural development; water and sanitation, transport infrastructure and governance.

AfDB’s active portfolio in Senegal currently includes nine national operations, for a total amount of USD 246.8 million. Infrastructure is the largest field of operations.  Next comes the rural sector, water and sanitation, and the social sector.  From the private sector window, AfDB is funding four interventions for about €184.5 million. The most recent operation, approved by the AfDB in December 2010, is the funding of €70 million for Blaise Diagne International Airport. About ten multinational projects, including three studies, are implemented in Senegal as well as in other countries of the sub-region including Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Mauritania, Guinea and Mali. The multinational projects portfolio amounted to more than USD 227 million as of the end of July 2011. This portfolio is mainly in infrastructure - in the transport subsector - and in the social and rural sectors. .

Media contact: Sabrina Hadjadj Aoul