On May 11, 2011 Opportunity International announced additional backing for the expansion of its international community banking network into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Tenke Fungurume Mining (TFM) has contributed $250,000 to support Opportunity DRC’s development of safe, community banking within the country. TFM, majority owned by Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., operates the Tenke Fungurume copper and cobalt mine in the Katanga Province of the DRC, the largest private investment (approximately $2 billion) in the DRC.
Currently, only 1 percent of DRC citizens have access to basic financial services. “In bringing our community banking system to the DRC, Opportunity International is breaking down barriers and providing its citizens with basic, safe and affordable financial tools,” said Bill Morgenstern, CEO, Opportunity International. Freeport-McMoRan and TFM are committed to initiatives to improve public health, education, and economic development in the communities where they operate. Richard C. Adkerson, president and CEO of Freeport-McMoRan said, “Our contribution to Opportunity International is aligned with the broader investment we are making within the DRC and is part of a strong commitment to improve the lives of those who live in our communities, and throughout the country. We are pleased to support Opportunity International’s efforts to expand access to financial services to the Congolese people.”