The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is an of-shoot of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) set up in 1960, but whereas the latter organisation tends to operate at government level, the IFC was developed to provide aid for private investment projects, either by making or guaranteeing loans or by actual purchase of equity. Any equity involvement is, however, subject to a 25 per cent limit. Although its capital base (capitalisation) is much smaller than that of the IBRD, it may borrow from the latter and reloan to private investors without the necessity of governmental approval.

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