IFC hosts trade finance seminar
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, hosted an advanced trade
finance seminar in Colombo last week to train bankers from Sri Lanka and
the Maldives on using sophisticated trade finance products, to better
serve small entrepreneurs engaged in international trade. The five-day
training program, sponsored by the government of Japan, helps bankers
identify opportunities to connect local businesses with international
customers and suppliers. The participants also learned to identify and
mitigate operational risks by adopting international best practices in
The seminar in progress
"It is important for bankers to continuously increase their knowledge
in trade finance to stay competitive," said head of the economic
cooperation section at the Embassy of Japan in Sri Lanka, Suguru Minoya.
"We believe IFC's training in trade finance is timely, as both countries
expand trade and investment."
The training was led by the IFC Global Trade Finance Advisory
Program. The initiative is part of IFC's $ 5 billion Global Trade
Finance Program, which supports banks in emerging markets as they
channel credit towards trade-related transactions of their clients.
"IFC's trade finance advisory program helps bankers keep pace with
developments in global financial markets," said IFC Country Manager, Sri
Lanka and Maldives, Adam Sack. "We will continue to work with financial
institutions through such interactive training programs to boost trade
expertise and support trade flows."
Set up in 2005, the Global Trade Finance Program has issued more than
15,000 guarantees totalling $23 billion to banks for trade-related
payment obligations of their clients in emerging markets. In 2012, IFC
provided $ 3 billion to support trade in the world's poorest countries
and 81 percent of all guarantees went to small and medium enterprises.
The program includes more than 260 partner banks in more than 90
Sri Lanka is a priority country for IFC. IFC's committed portfolio of
over $200 million in Sri Lanka covers projects across a range of
sectors, including infrastructure and tourism.
IFC also provides advisory services to promote sustainable growth
among small and medium enterprises by facilitating access to finance and
by offering capacity-building and training opportunities.