Establishment of the World Diaspora Fund

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Mar 2010
Geneva, Switzerland, March, 31 2010 - The WDF will invest through loans, guarantees, or even taking stakes in microfinance institutions in the South. The Fund will also participate in financing infrastructure identified by the migrants.

The creation of this Fund is an initiative of the Working Group of the International Migrants Remittances Observatory for Least Developed Countries (IMRO, www.oitfm.org), in partnership with several public and private organizations. It’s  also  a part of the follow up of the recommendations of the Ministerial Conference of LDCs on enhancing the impact of remittances on development, hosted in Cotonou (Benin) in February 2006 by the Government of the Republic of Benin, with support from the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the Office of the United Nations High Representative for Least Developed Countries (UN-OHRLLS), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Norway, Ireland and the World Bank.

According to the World Bank, migrant remittances amount to an annual total of USD 300 billion according to the World Bank. But these remittances are sent to countries of origin for short-term (or emergency) assistance, in order to meet family needs (food, health and education for instance). A minor part of these funds contributes directly to the development of economic activities such as building houses or   funding income generating activities.

In this context, migrants can be viewed as excellent investors, contributing to the fight against poverty, creating of enterprises and jobs in the South. The World Diaspora Fund is therefore intended to offer migrants a secure investment vehicle that will contribute to the development of their countries of origin.

The WDF will invest through loans, guarantees, or even taking stakes in microfinance institutions in the South. The Fund will also participate in financing infrastructure identified by the migrants.

The WDF will provide migrant investors a fair return and security comparable to the one of microfinance funds (not only in terms of social impact).  

 

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