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SIFEM PLC: Investment for Job Creation

Bern, 18.08.2011 - As of 17 August 2011, SIFEM PLC (Swiss Investment Fund for Emerging Markets) is organised as a public company of the Swiss Confederation under private law. An independent institution has thus been created which will make a useful contribution towards the creation of jobs and the struggle against poverty in developing and emerging countries.

The General Meeting for the declaration of independence of the re-structured SIFEM PLC and the election of the board was held Wednesday, August 17th, in the presence of Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch, Secretary of State for the Economy. The process approved by the Federal Council to establish a Swiss development finance institution - following similar European models - which will be monitored and funded by the Confederation has thus been concluded.

Former Secretary of State Jean-Daniel Gerber has been elected chairman of the board of directors. Michel Juvet, director of the Geneva based private bank Bordier & Cie, will be the board's vice-president. Following members have also been elected: Hugo Fasel, director of Caritas Switzerland; Jean-Luc Bernasconi, deputy head of Economic Cooperation and Development, State Secretariat for Economic Affairs SECO; as well as Susanne Grossmann, Julia Balandina Jaquier and Iain Tulloch, who all were already members of the previous organisation's investment committee. SIFEM PLC's board of directors therefore brings a vast knowhow in investment, finances and development cooperation together.

SIFEM PLC invests - usually jointly with other European development finance institutions - mostly in funds aimed at SME in developing and emerging countries via shares or loans. It thus facilitates the companies' access to long-term funding, contributing towards their sustainable growth and the creation of jobs. SIFEM PLC is an initiative of the Economic Development Cooperation of the SECO.

Address for enquiries:

Ivo Germann, Head of private sector promotion, SECO, phone 079 757 95 87
Beatrice Maser Mallor, Head of Economic Cooperation and Development, SECO,
phone 031 324 07 53


State Secretariat for Economic Affairs
Internet: http://www.seco.admin.ch
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