IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, has announced that Export Import Bank of Bangladesh is joining its Global Trade Finance Program. IFC is providing the bank with a facility of up to US$5mn within the programme. This will be IFC’s first facility to an Islamic bank in the country.

Paolo Martelli, IFC regional director for South Asia, notes, “In Bangladesh, where the Muslim population exceeds 88%, Islamic banking is expected to increase its foothold significantly in coming years. Better regulations and risk management tools are expected to gradually improve the operating environment for Islamic banks.”

IFC’s Global Trade Finance Program will provide Bangladesh Exim Bank with risk coverage in a difficult market and a global network that will help grow its trade finance business. This paves the way for countries like Bangladesh to increase their share of global trade.