IIC supports the technology and communications sector in Colombia


Loan of up to US$8 million to Energía Integral Andina S.A. will help improve telecommunications services on resort island

Washington, D.C. - On May 31, 2011, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) approved a loan of up to US$8 million to a trust to be established by Energía Integral Andina S.A. (EIA) in Colombia.

The purpose of the project is to provide financing for the construction and operation of two fiber optic submarine cables, one spanning 810 kilometers between Isla de San Andrés and Tolú on the Colombian coast, and the other stemming from the first cable and extending 217 kilometers to the city of Colón, in Panama. The submarine cables will be used to provide transmission services, including radio, telephone, television, and data transmission and interconnection between computers.

According to Olga Lucía De Narváez, IIC Investment Officer in charge of the operation, "With this operation, the IIC is supporting the development of telecommunications in Colombia. The project seeks to improve communications services on Isla de San Andrés in order to improve quality, prices, and connectivity, and increase internet user penetration rates, thereby benefitting trade and tourism in the area. The cable to Panama is equally relevant to the development of communications because it will be one of the international connections for outgoing and incoming data between Colombia and Panama."

About Energía Integral Andina

Energía Integral Andina is a Colombian company established in 1986 that initially focused on manufacturing, installing, operating, and maintaining industrial batteries. It is currently the only manufacturer of these types of batteries in Colombia. In 1996 EIA began focusing on other areas such as the installation, operation, and maintenance of fiber optic networks, copper telephone lines, coaxial cable television networks, and satellite television equipment. In 2006 EIA began participating in infrastructure bids. It currently operates three concessions, including the construction and operation of the submarine fiber optic cable that connects the Colombian coast and Isla de San Andrés. For more information about Energía Integral Andina, visit www.energiaintegralandina.com

About the IIC

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 2010, the IIC reached US$1.4 billion in assets and approved forty-nine operations channeling US$374.8 million to SMEs in the region. For more information on the IIC’s activities, please visit www.iic.int

Contact: Olga Lucía De Narváez

Telephone: + (571) 325-7052

Email: olgadena@iadb.org