Kathmandu, Aug 17: The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has appointed Babacar Sedikh Faye as the new Resident Representative for Nepal.
Faye has more than 20 years of experience, including 14 years with the World Bank Group. Most recently, he served as IFC’s Resident Representative in Sierra Leone and Liberia and in the Democratic Republic of Congo where he led the expansion of IFC’s portfolio, according to a press statement issued by the IFC.
In Nepal, Faye will focus on IFC’s business development efforts, expand upstream engagement and deepen partnership with all key stakeholders to substantially grow IFC’s investment and advisory activities to deliver development impact, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,said the statement.
“IFC is delivering on its ambitious target for Nepal by significantly increasing investments and advisory services,” the statement quoted IFC Country Manager for Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan Wendy Werner as saying. “I am very pleased that Babacar, with his strong experience in developing countries, will be spearheading our efforts to further grow our programs in Nepal.”
A Senegalese national, Faye joined IFC in 2006, working initially for the Investment Climate Advisory Unit. Prior to joining IFC, Faye worked in the New York office of White & Case, as Counsel for a pension fund, and as an Adjunct Professor. Faye is a member of the New York State Bar (USA), and he attended Fordham Law School (New York, US), the University of Paris 1 Sorbonne (Paris, France), and Cheikh A. Diop University (Dakar, Senegal).
“With the pandemic affecting the key pillars of the economy, including tourism, this has been a difficult year for Nepal. Over half a million jobs were directly dependent on tourism arrivals last year,” said Faye. “Building on IFC’s recent strong achievements in Nepal, I will lead the development and implementation of an integrated investment and advisory strategy that will enable IFC to help Nepal to further unlock its potential in the infrastructure, tourism, agriculture and financial sectors, in line with the overall strategy of World Bank Group in Nepal.”
The past financial year saw IFC invest in Nepal’s financial sector, a move to help create up to 50,000 jobs over the next five years through funding for small and medium sized enterprises – a key engine of growth in Nepal. IFC also invested in the 216 MW Upper Trishuli-1 Hydropower project (UT-1), which is expected to provide improved electricity to several million people, set social and environmental benchmarks, reduce the electricity import bill and showcase Nepal's readiness for more foreign direct investment. Despite the uncertainty, IFC had a record year in Nepal. By the end of June 2020, IFC’s committed portfolio in Nepal was approximately $500 million — a significant increase from previous year — where it stood at $75 million.