Columbia International Affairs Online: Policy Briefs

CIAO DATE: 10/2011

International Finance Corporation (ABCs of the IFIs Brief)

Jenny Ottenhoff

September 2011

Center for Global Development


The IFC is a multilateral financial institution that provides financial and technical assistance to the private sector in middle- and low- income countries. Unlike other international financial institutions, the IFC operates on a commercial basis and invests exclusively in for-profit projects that promote poverty reduction and development. Increasingly, the IFC is investing in the world’s poorest countries and fragile states that have few private investors. IFC investments support a range of activities including agribusiness, manufacturing, health and education, microfinance programs, and infrastructure development.