CAO Cases

Arne Hoel, The World Bank

Middle East & North Africa

Yemen / HSA Foods-01

An individual
Date Filed
April 05, 2021
Air and water pollution, risk of disasters, violation of national laws and Performance Standards
Case Status
Open - Ombudsman


Project Overview
IFC has an active investment of US$75 million in Hayel Saaed Anam Group’s processing operations in Yemen (HSA Foods). According to HSA Group’s website, HSA Foods is part of the Group’s manufacturing activities and produces necessity foods such as flour, sugar and dairy products. It is comprised of six Yemeni companies:  i) National Dairy and Food Company Taiz; ii) National Dairy and Food Company Hodaida; iii) Yemen Company for Sugar Refining; iv) Yemen Company for Flour Mills and Silos Aden; v) Yemen Company for Flour Mills and Silos Al Hodaida; and vi) Al Hodaida Flour Mills Co. Limited.


IFC’s investment will be directed to finance the permanent working capital needs of HSA Foods. IFC has also engaged in associated advisory services in two key areas: i) energy and water efficiency solutions, and ii) gender diversity.


An individual submitted a complaint in relation to Yemen Company for Sugar Refining. The complainant raises environmental and social concerns including: i) marine water pollution through waste disposal, coal combustion and sugar refining processes; ii) potential landslides and land subsidence caused by the company’s waste water discharge into the soil; iii) air pollution resulting from transporting ashes to an HSA-owned subsidiary in open trucks; and iv) damage to the complainant’s professional reputation. Additionally, the complainant owns a plot of land close to the project’s location, which might be affected by the issues raised in the complaint.


CAO Action
CAO found all the complaint eligible in April 2021 and has commenced an assessment.


The assessment stage is underway.


Note: A CAO assessment does not entail a judgment on the merits of complaints. Rather, it aims to listen to people's concerns, understand the different perspectives, and determine what options are available to address the complaint through CAO's Dispute Resolution and Compliance functions.


Status as of August 1, 2021


Project information

Project Name & Number
HSA Foods Yemen 43466
Global Manufacturing & Services
Hayel Saeed Anam (HSA) Group
Food & Beverages
Middle East & North Africa
Environmental Category
$75 million loan

Case Tracker


  • Eligible: Completed
  • Assessment Period: In Process