SIFEM - Swiss Investment Fund for Emerging Markets

SIFEM – Investing in Sustainable Development, edition 2021/22

The latest SIFEM Impact Report takes a specific look at the social impact of the COVID-19 crisis, looking first at the global effects of the crisis in developing countries before analysing the job situation in the portfolio. Creating and supporting decent jobs in target countries is one of the main development priorities for SIFEM, in line with the strategic objectives defined by the Swiss Government for 2021-24.


At the level of the overall portfolio, it is positive to see that jobs have actually increased during the crisis. This is mainly due to changes in the composition of the portfolio and in particular, to new companies entering the portfolio in 2020. However, looking specifically at pre-existing portfolio companies which went through the crisis, some net job losses can be observed. Fortunately, these job losses have been relatively moderate, which suggests that these portfolio companies has been stronger and more resilient than originally feared at the beginning of the crisis. It is still premature to assess the full of the crisis, but one of the open questions is to what extent the crisis may impose lasting scars on the labour market structures and aggravate income inequality in the countries in which SIFEM operates.