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Atlantic Business International and IFC agree to promote access to finance for smallholder farmers in West Africa

(BANQUE ATLANTIQUE) – Atlantic Business International (ABI), a subsidiary of the Banque Centrale Populaire du Maroc Group, and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, represented respectively by Mr. Habib Koné, Managing Director and Mr. Mohamed Gouled, Vice-President, signed a partnership agreement on March 16, 2018 in Abidjan.

Agriculture being a major pillar for development and social inclusion in West Africa, ABI has decided to establish a structural partnership with the IFC, as part of the project to set up a platform dedicated to strengthening opportunities for financing the value chain of one of the key economic sectors of the Continent.

Through this agreement, ABI favors innovation in its credit portfolio diversification strategy by relying on the expertise of the IFC, in order to better meet the needs of actors in the agricultural sector in West Africa, mainly in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire and Mali, through its Banque Atlantique network.

IFC and ABI will develop tools aimed at improving knowledge of the agricultural world, as well as the management of costs and the specific risk profile, in order to stimulate access to finance for small farmers. They are also committed to creating innovative solutions and approaches that are better suited to the needs of farmers. In particular, this involves deploying, via the holding company’s banking subsidiaries, mobile payment solutions and digital tools as well as capacity building modules for farmers.

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Habib Koné, CEO of ABI said: “ Agriculture being one of the pillars of our economies, financial institutions should provide more support to actors in the agricultural sector. Under the impetus of the Groupe Banque Centrale Populaire du Maroc, whose vocation is to contribute to the development of the Continent through financial inclusion, ABI is committed to supporting this target, which is considered a priority in order to support economic growth in Africa. This project, which is part of the vision shared by the IFC, will enable the BCP group to increase the financing granted to entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector through innovative solutions both in Côte d’Ivoire and in other countries of the sub-Saharan Africa. -region “.

The context of evolution of the agricultural sector through an approach of global value chains and a high level of investment and production, resulted in the exclusion of smallholders from financing. For example, in Côte d’Ivoire, the sector receives only about 5% of bank financing despite representing nearly 25% of GDP and contributing significantly to economic growth. Adequate investments in agricultural value chains can reduce costs and facilitate small farmers’ access to finance, while enabling them to expand into larger markets.

About Atlantic Business International

Atlantic Business International (ABI) is a financial holding company, subsidiary of the Groupe Banque Centrale Populaire du Maroc. A financial group present in the 8 countries of the WAEMU area and in Guinea-Conakry, ABI occupies a key position in the region through its commercial banks (Banque Atlantique, BIA Niger and BPMG), its insurance companies (Atlantique Assurances Life and IARD in Côte d’Ivoire and GTA C2A Vie and IARD in Togo) and its specialized businesses (Atlantique Finance and Atlantic Asset Management in Côte d’Ivoire). Atlantic Business International is the 3th WAEMU group in terms of market share and the 2th banking player in Côte d’Ivoire.

About the parent company: Groupe Banque Centrale Populaire (BCP)

The BCP Group, one of Morocco’s leading banking institutions, is in the Top Ten of African banks in terms of balance sheet size. It draws its strength from its values ​​of solidarity, mutuality and its unique organization in Morocco. The Group is made up of 9 Banques Populaires Régionales (BPR) with a cooperative vocation, the Banque Centrale Populaire (BCP), the central body of the Group in the form of a public limited company listed on the stock exchange, as well as specialized subsidiaries, foundations and banks. and representations abroad. The BCP Group is present in 14 African countries and 13 other countries in the rest of the world.

In the WAEMU area, the BCP relies heavily on Banque Atlantique to build the first pan-African banking group, united and anchored locally.

This notion of solidarity refers to the Group’s commitment alongside African countries for the financing of major infrastructure projects and the development of social and financial inclusion, while strengthening the link between the African diaspora in the world and the native country. It also illustrates the strong link between the Group and its various subsidiaries for better resilience over time.

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