Civic culture is key to reduce violence, study finds

May 30, 2012
IDB-sponsored study explores how changes in civic culture are needed to achieve long-term success in mitigating violence Any successful strategy to prevent violence should include measures to recognize and change behaviors prompted by beliefs, emotions and cultural factors, according to a new study sponsored by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

Improving the business climate in the Caribbean

March 25, 2011
Several IDB programs are helping the region diversify its economy and attract new investments The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is financing several programs to improve the business environment, foster diversification and enhance competitiveness in the Caribbean.

Latin America and the Caribbean see slower growth in next four years

March 19, 2009
Latin American and Caribbean leaders expect per capita income to fall or grow moderately in the 2009–2012  period and governments to rely more on financing from international institutions, according to a survey by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The expectations contrast sharply with the recent economic performance in the region, where product per capita grew 4.1 percent annually in the past five years.

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.

Pilar Ramirez, Social Entrepreneur

December 27, 2007
Pilar Ramirez and her associates have been very busy. Over the past 15 years, these five women with no formal financial background have build a lending organization with 25,000 clients and a loan portfolio of US$20 million and converted it to a regulated institution—Fondo Financiero Privado FIE—that has achieved sufficient scale and efficiency to reduce interest rates recently. Ramirez also won the Social Entrepreneurship Award in 2000 from the Inter-American Development Bank for pioneering micro-lending in Bolivia and advancing policies that favor women in Latin America.

Progress in Hard Times

December 27, 2007
Caja Los Andes, Bolivia’s second largest microfinance institution, has a lot to be proud of. Despite the recession in Bolivia last year, the caja maintained a low default rate of 6–7 percent of the loan portfolio and was able to increase its client base. For these achievements, Caja Los Andes won the prize for Excellence in Microfinance of Regulated Institutions from the Inter-American Development Bank in October 2000, and was also cited for its “clear business plan” and new products and services.

Marching to Its Own Drummer

December 26, 2007
Fondo Financiero Privado FIE SA, winner of the 2001 Inter-American Award for Excellence in Micro-enterprise Development for Regulated Microfinance Institutions, has always done things its own way.For starters, it is not affiliated with an international network. Back in its early days as an NGO, when the rest of the sector favored group credit, FIE bucked the trend by developing its own methodology for granting individual loans to urban microentrepreneurs.

Governments in microfinance: threat or opportunity?

November 09, 2007
By Peter BateFrom Microenterprise Americas magazine, Fall 2007

Protecting the Little Guy

September 14, 2006
What does the international promotion video of ChileCompra—the Chilean government’s web portal for public announcements of competitive bids—have in common with Peruvian police boots or with a stream of government contracts in the Bolivian city of Oruro? These are all cases of microenterprises participating in public bidding and competing with the big traditional suppliers.