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IDB brings Latin American bankers to Seoul to increase their knowledge of Korea

Korea Insights Program aims at improving the commercial and financial relations between both regions

SEOUL, Korea – Over four days, tensenior representatives of trade finance and international commerce departments of financial institutions from Latin America and the Caribbean are participating this week in the first Korea Insights Program, an immersion program focusing on the country’s economic, financial and cultural reality. The program was organized by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to help banks from Latin America and the Caribbean improve commercial and financial ties between their client firms and companies from Korea.

Following on the success of last September’s China Insights Program, the IDB has organized the program, together with the Korean Institute of Finance, as the second in a series of initiatives aimed at deepening Latin American and Caribbean bankers’ understanding of historical and cultural aspects of Asian countries, along with knowledge of their financial markets and business practices.

This week’s program comes on the eve of the IDB/IIC Annual Meetings, to be held March 26-29 in the Korean city of Busan. The event also coincides with the tenth anniversary of the IDB’s Trade Finance Facilitation Program, which had helped promote trade finance for financial institutions in Latin America and the Caribbean and served as a tool to promote regional and international integration.

With the knowledge gained from their participation, bankers from various countries in Latin America and the Caribbean will be able to help their clients with imports to and exports from Korea. Among the week’s scheduled activities are meetings with leading institutions such as the Korean Export Credit Agency, the Ministries of Industry, Energy and Commerce, briefings with Korean regulatory authorities, meetings between bankers from the region with their Korean counterparts, and visits to important cultural sites.

“Korea is one of the countries in Asia with the greatest financial and commercial potential," said Gema Sacristan, Chief of the IDB's Financial Markets Division." A better understanding of its unique characteristics and business culturewill help strengthen commercial relations on both sides of the Pacific.”

The overall aim of the Insights programs is to open the Latin American and Caribbean business sector to the world, with the hope of expanding them to other countries in addition to Korea and China, to help banks from the region in supporting the internationalization of their client firms.

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