Inter-American Investment Corporation Will Receive 35 Billion Colombian Pesos In Funding From Bancóldex

03/25/2009

The IIC will use the proceeds to finance productive investment projects for SMEs in Colombia

Medellín, Colombia - On March 26, 2009, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) and Banco de Comercio Exterior de Colombia S.A. (Bancóldex) signed a memorandum of understanding for a 35 billion Colombian peso line of credit that will enable the IIC to grant medium- and long-term local-currency loans to more Colombian SMEs.

With the funding from Bancóldex, the IIC will be able to build a Colombian peso-denominated loan portfolio that could, if necessary, be funded directly through the capital market.

The signing ceremony took place during the fiftieth Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Inter-American Development Bank and the twenty-fourth Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Inter-American Investment Corporation. Gustavo Ardila Latiff, President, signed for Bancóldex. Signing for the IIC was General Manager Jacques Rogozinski.

By signing the memorandum, the IIC and Bancóldex ratify their commitment to offer Colombian companies a substantial local-currency alternative at this difficult juncture for the international capital markets.

According to Mr. Ardila Latiff, "Bancóldex would like to thank the IIC for believing in Colombia, and, especially, in us. By joining forces to channel funding for loans, the two institutions will provide comprehensive support for strengthening micro, small, and medium-size enterprises. By offering other development-oriented services, Bancóldex will enhance its role in fostering growth, both that of Colombia and that of its productive base: MSMEs."

"Receiving support in the form of local-currency funding from Bancóldex is gratifying because it means that the relationship that began in 2005 with an IIC loan in dollars to Bancóldex has done more than grow. It has deepened. Our two institutions have common goals, such as supporting SMEs. That’s why working together has a greater impact for Colombia’s small and medium-size companies," said Mr. Rogozinski.

Bancóldex is one of Colombia’s largest banks in terms of equity. It is a mixed-capital company in which the Colombian government has a majority shareholding through the Finance Ministry and the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Tourism. When the assets and liabilities of Colombia’s IFI (Instituto de Fomento Industrial) were transferred to Bancóldex in 2003, Bancóldex broadened its range of services. In addition to its role as an export-import bank, it focused on the micro, small, and medium-size enterprises that serve the domestic market. SMEs account for 43% of Bancóldex’s portfolio, most of which is medium- and long-term. Bancóldex is seeking to increase the percentage of its portfolio devoted to SMEs and microloans for microenterprises.

The Inter-American Investment Corporation is a multilateral financial institution that is a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group. It provides financing (in the form of equity investments, loans, guarantees, and other instruments) and advisory services to private enterprises in Latin America and the Caribbean. In 2008, the IIC approved sixty-four operations channeling US$300.5 million to SMEs in the region. The IIC’s mission is to promote the economic development of its regional member countries by encouraging the establishment, expansion, and modernization of private enterprises, particularly those that are small and medium in size. For more information on the IIC’s activities, please visit www.iic.int.



Contact: Juan Eduardo Zuluaga/Sylvia Szankay

Telephone: (202) 623-3812

Email: juanz@iadb.org