THE International Finance Corporation (IFC), part of the World Bank Group, said it will shortly sign a deal with Singaporean partners to set up a Cambodian-Laotian investment fund.
IFC resident representative Julia Brickell said on Monday by email that the deal should be signed in the coming quarter.
The IFC Web site states that the Singaporean partners that will manage the fund are Emerging Market Investments (EMI) Pte Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Emerging Markets Group Holding, and Aureos Capital Limited.
Joshua Morris, managing director of Phnom Penh-based EMI, said an agreement on the fund could be signed as soon as next month. He said investors are being sought for the fund, which has an initial target of US$20 million in capital. That could be extended to $30 million, added.
"Most of the fund would ultimately be targeted at Cambodia," Morris said, explaining that the difference in investment weight is due to Cambodia's larger economy. He would not provide the identities of other investors before an agreement.
The IFC's Web site disclosed that it will invest up to $4 million in the fund, which will target small and medium-sized businesses in both countries "with a preliminary focus on business services, agribusiness and microfinance".
It adds that the fund will be established in Luxembourg and registered in Singapore. The fund management will be based in Phnom Penh with a consulting company operating in Vientiane, it said.