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12.07.06

IFC and Raiffeisen International support Housing and Energy EfficiencyFinancing in Southeastern Europe.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm ofthe World Bank Group, and three subsidiaries of Raiffeisen InternationalBank-Holding AG, have signed agreements to provide 35 million in long term funds to support the development of housing finance and energy efficiency finance products of Raiffeisen International subsidiary banks in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and Serbia.

IFC loans amounting to 15 million and CHF 15.5 million respectively will enable Raiffeisen Bank d.d. Bosna i Hercegovina and Raiffeisenbank a.d. in Serbia to continue to grow their mortgage lending programs and develop innovative products such as loans for energy efficient projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

An IFC loan to Raiffeisen Bank Kosovo J.S.C. in the amount of 10 million will support the banks small and medium size business line and the launch of its residential housing finance program. IFCs investment is expected to have a significant developmental impact by strengthening the emerging housing finance sector in Kosovo, expanding home ownership in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, and reducing energy consumption and pollution.

Shahbaz Mavaddat, IFCs director for Southern Europe and Central Asia said, Working with Raiffeisen International in this new way, through its subsidiary banks in Southern Europe, we expect to broaden and deepen financial intermediation in the frontier markets of Bosnia and Herzegovina,Kosovo, and Serbia. IFC is keen on seeing significant development in both the primary mortgage and energy efficiency markets in Southern Europe.

Herbert Stepic, CEO of Raiffeisen International, saidOur comprehensive branch network makes us an ideal partner for the IFC to accomplish its mission in Southeastern Europe as we are able to distribute the funds provided by the IFC to SME?s and consumers. We are glad to add three further agreements to the long-lasting and successful cooperation with the IFC.

IFC is pleased to partner with the Raiffeisen Group to develop its housing finance activities in Kosovo and its energy efficiency products in the region, said Jyrki Koskelo, IFCs director for Global Financial Markets. This is IFCs first energy efficiency credit line, providing funding and product development support to a well established institution in Bosnia and Herzegovina. We believe energy efficiency finance has tremendous potential in the region and look forward to replicating this project in other countries.



RaiffeisenInternational operates one of the leading banking networks in CEE withsubsidiary banks and leasing companies in 16 markets. More than 10million customers are attended through 2,700 business outlets. In eightmarkets, the respective Network Bank ranks among the three largest localbanks. Representative offices in Lithuania and Moldova complement theGroup''s presence in the region. Raiffeisen International is a fullyconsolidated subsidiary of Raiffeisen Zentralbank ?sterreich AG (RZB),which owns 70 per cent of the common stock. The remaining 30 per cent isfree float, the shares are traded on the Vienna Stock Exchange. RZB is aleading corporate and investment bank in Austria and the centralinstitution of the Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, the country''slargest banking group. Raiffeisen International''s balance-sheet totalamounted to 41.9 billion at the end of the first quarter 2006. Consolidated profit (after minorities) increased by 34 per cent to 124 million, compared with the first quarter 2005.

The mission of IFC is to promote sustainable private sector investmentin developing and transition countries, helping to reduce poverty andimprove peoples lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. From its founding in 1956 through FY05, IFC has committed more than $49 billion of its own funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319 companies in 140 developing countries. IFCs worldwide committed portfolio as of FY05 was $19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held for participants in loan syndications.

For further information please contact Michael Palzer (+43.1/71707-1504, michael.palzer@ri.co.at) or Lars D. Hofer (+43.1/71 707-1930,lars.hofer@ri.co.at).

http://www.ri.co.at, http://www.rzb.at, http://www.ifc.org

 

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