IIC hosts phytosanitary conference, workshop in Guatemala


Guatemala City – On April 12, 2010, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) hosted a conference on international phytosanitary measures featuring experts from around the world, including officials from the Inter-American Development Bank, the European Union, the World Trade Organization, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. These experts will remain in Guatemala to carry out a three-day workshop for small and medium-sized businesses as part of the FINPYME ExportPlus program. In the workshop, participants will learn about global food regulations and how to prepare agricultural products for export to major markets, including the United States and the European Union. This is the fifth of nine FINPYME ExportPlus workshops designed to improve the capacity of Guatemalan businesses to export.

FINPYME ExportPlus supports the objectives of the World Trade Organization’s Aid for Trade initiative. Technical experts provide direct assistance to help small and medium-sized enterprises improve their competitiveness and their capacity to export. FINPYME ExportPlus workshops cover diverse topics, such as labeling requirements, export management, organic production, and productivity improvement. Specific SME sectors to benefit from the program are leather manufacturing, agriculture, coffee, and wood products. In addition to group workshops, experts also provide technical assistance for individual firms for trade certifications and process and management improvements. The FINPYME ExportPlus program in Guatemala is funded by the Government of Italy.

The IIC is a multilateral financial institution that is a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group. 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. It does so by providing 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 2009, the IIC reached US$1.4 billion in assets and approved 40 operations channeling US$299.8 million to SMEs in the region. For more information on the IIC’s activities, please visit www.iic.int.

Contact: Antonello Bove

Telephone: (202) 623-3905

Email: antonellob@iadb.org