Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries (NORFUND)
Norfund (Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries) is an investment company intended to develop and establish profitable and sustainable enterprises in poor countries. The objective is to promote business development and contribute to economic growth and poverty alleviation.
Norfund operates in some of the world’s poorest countries and invests in markets where ordinary commercial enterprises are often reluctant to venture alone because of the high risk. Norfund invests equity, directly in enterprises and indirectly through funds, as well as providing loans to individual companies.
Norfund’s investments are divided into four investment areas:
-Renewable Energy and
Norfund has chosen to concentrate on renewable energy and the finance sector in particular.
Norfund’s main regions of activity are eastern and Southern Africa. In addition, Norfund invests in Central America and selected countries in Southeast Asia (Bangladesh, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam).
Norfund succeeds in its goal of creating sustainable development and alleviating poverty because we undertake profitable investments that give rise to viable enterprises.
Sectoral Distribution of Norfund’s Portfolio:
Investment in renewable energy accounts for 45 per cent of the portfolio. Norfund has invested approximately 37 per cent of its portfolio in investment funds and fund structures (excluding micro-finance funds). These funds invest in a number of different sectors. Norfund has invested NOK 683 million in micro-financing, in the form of equity capital or loans to micro-finance institutions, or indirectly through funds that invest in micro-finance institutions.
Regional Distribution of Norfund’s Portfolio:
Norfund maintains an increasing focus on sub-Saharan Africa. A total of 78 per cent of the new investment agreements signed in 2009 were in Africa, compared to 60 per cent in 2008.
Norfund’s investment agreements in Africa and Latin America each account for 36 per cent of the portfolio, while 28 per cent is found in Asia (see top figure below). The relatively high proportion found in Latin America is mainly due to SN Power Invest’s engagements in Peru, Chile, the Philippines, Nepal and India.
As of 30 September 2010 Norfund’s total portfolio of investment agreements constituted NOK 5202 million, where NOK 4103 million represented net disbursements to the investments. The portfolio comprised a total of 86 investment projects distributed in four investment areas: Financial Institutions, SME Funds, Renewable Energy and Industrial Partnerships. See more