The IDB, a partner of Colombia in development

March 17, 2009
Since the mid-1990s the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has been the leading source of multilateral financing for Colombia. Over the last 50 years, the IDB has approved more than US$14.8 billion in loans and non-refundable technical cooperation projects for Colombia. Throughout its history, the IDB has supported the Colombian government and private sector in key development areas such as infrastructure, state modernization and reform, small and medium enterprise, agriculture, energy, climate change and environmental protection.

Venture capital for low-income markets

February 26, 2009
Investing in housing, healthcare, education, basic utilities and nutrition can not only fulfill a social mission, but it can also be a profitable business venture. This is the concept of IGNIA Fund, which will channel venture capital resources to fund commercially viable growth companies serving the “base of the pyramid,” those persons in Latin America and the Caribbean earning less than $3,260 a year. The IGNIA Fund selects projects with the potential to be expanded on a larger scale, thereby increasing the social and economic impact.

More growth or less inequality?

September 20, 2005
Increased investment, low inflation, an improved fiscal situation, decreased unemployment. Latin America and the Caribbean have been hearing plenty of good news the past 18 months. A group of renowned economists analyzed the situation at a seminar hosted by the IDB Research Department to honor IDB President Enrique V. Iglesias, who will retire on September 30. Iglesias himself opened the seminar, which was chaired by IDB Chief Economist Guillermo Calvo, with the participation of Ricardo Hausmann, Michael Mussa, José Antonio Ocampo and John Williamson.

Donors pledge support to assist Latin American countries in CAFTA-DR trade agreement to improve compliance of labor standards

July 20, 2005
Donors pledged their support to assist six Latin American countries participating in the CAFTA-DR free trade agreement with the United States in improving the compliance and enforcement of international and national labor standards and legislation. Delegations from Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua met with donors at the headquarters of the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington, DC to discuss their strategic priorities and specific goals they want to accomplish regarding labor law compliance and institutional strengthening.

Entrepreneurial seedbed

March 28, 2005
A system that helps entrepreneurs in microbusiness and simultaneously grants them consumption credit, known as Empresariado Azteca, is working successfully in the shops of the Mexican chain Elektra. The system bets on the future of low-income individuals with good business ideas, so that they can turn their ideas into companies or expand already established businesses.

The double-edged sword of currency mismatches

November 04, 2004
Doing business in dollars has proved to be risky many times over in Latin America. When the price of the dollar goes up, local exporting companies increase their income and therefore try to export more. But that same exchange rate depreciation spells trouble to all companies indebted in dollars, and big trouble to the ones who owe money in dollars and have income in local currency.

Better microfinance through remittances and technology

October 19, 2004
A model that connects online remittances and microfinance institutions was presented recently at IDB headquarters in Washington, DC, by Atsumasa Tochisako, CEO of Microfinance International Corporation (MFIC). The company has started sending remittances to microfinance institutions in El Salvador through it and plans to open shop in several other Latin American countries.

Three for success: tripartite partnerships

July 29, 2004
The historic center of Mexico City needs to preserve its great historical and architectural value. The area is threatened by social and economic decline, ranging from abandonment of buildings in the area to high delinquency rates and street commerce. After many attempts to rescue the historic center, a new effort is underway to rescue the culture and colonial architecture, and nurture a fundamental bond among the community, the investors and the government.

Profile of the young Latin American entrepreneur

July 26, 2004
They belong to the middle class, have university degrees and on average begin to think about being entrepreneurs at 25, but they do not open their first company until about 5 years later. These are the characteristics that define the young Latin American entrepreneurs, according to a recent study by the Inter-American Development Bank that is the subject of the book Desarrollo Emprendedor (published in Spanish and available in English in the fall).

Central American nations and Dominican Republic call for ratification of CAFTA

July 13, 2004
Trade and labor ministers from Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua announced at the Inter-American Development Bank that they will take steps to strengthen the enforcement of labor standards in their countries. In a joint statement issued after a meeting, the ministers also called on the U.S. Congress to ratify the CAFTA free trade agreement negotiated recently with their countries. Trade among the seven participating countries totals $30 billion a year.