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OFID IN THE FIELD PHOTO: OFID/Natalia Salazar


PROJECT The rehabilitation and upgrade of 14 rural roads across the island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines is contributing to the connection of an important part of the country with the airport, seaport and the capital of Kingstown. The project will develop rural areas by enhancing agricultural livelihoods as well as providing access to healthcare, education and job opportunities. Agriculture is vital to the national economy (making a 6.1 percent average contribution to GDP over the last few years), especially in rural communities where it remains the dominant economic activity. With a total cost estimated at US$36.16 million, the project is being co-financed by OFID and Arab Coordination Group-member, the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED). Once completed, the project is expected to also benefit the tourism sector (the government is currently promoting eco- tourism in the project area).


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ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES: AGRICULTURE AND FEEDER ROADS


O PHOTO: OFID/Natalia Salazar


TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS PROJECT With a total cost estimated at US$141.60 million, this project is financed by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) and OFID. In early 2019, a joint appraisal mission was conducted involving all co-financiers. The government is supporting the development of the energy sector and the project aims to increase generation capacity by upgrading and expanding the available infrastructure. Over the past five years, the growth rate of electricity demand in Suriname has increased (between 6.8 percent and 8 percent) due to urbanization and construction. This has led to critical power shortages, which the project aims to ease.


SURINAME: EXPANSION OF POWER GENERATION,


Armenia and trade


FID has signed a US$25 million loan agreement with Ameriabank aimed at supporting trade flows to and from Armenia.


This is the second facility OFID has extended


to Ameriabank. In 2015, OFID extended US$20 million to support small- and medium- sized enterprises (SMEs) in Armenia across a diverse range of sectors including wholesale trade, material production, food production and the hotel industry. The new loan from OFID’s trade finance


operations will be used to support the expansion of Ameriabank’s international trade portfolio. Ameriabank is the largest bank in Armenia by key indicators and is in a strong position to continue contributing to banking sector development. “Armenia’s economy has experienced sustained


growth and ambitious reforms,” said OFID’s Assistant Director-General, Private Sector and Trade Finance Operations, Tareq Alnassar. “Together, OFID and Ameriabank aim to further strengthen socio-economic progress in the region by supporting trade and SMEs – a vital element of all developing economies. Some 80 to 90 percent of world trade relies on trade finance, mostly of a short-term nature, and we are pleased to be able to play our part in encouraging the revival of the complex links and networks involved in the trade finance market to keep finance flowing.” Ameriabank’s CEO Artak Hanesyan said: “I am pleased that we have once again joined efforts with OFID; this time to support our clients in organizing their trade activities under more competitive and auspicious conditions. OFID funds will enhance our trade financing capacities and help us open new doors for small and medium-sized businesses to support Armenia’s economy and create new jobs. I would like to express my appreciation to our partners for their impact on trade finance facilitation volumes, which, I believe, will greatly enhance the development of the Armenian economy. ”


OFID has mobilized a total of US$4.62 billion and financed about 132 projects in the Caribbean region since the organization was established.


• Armenia has also received public sector loans from OFID to help strengthen its agriculture sector and boost food security.


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