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IFC press release
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, bolstered its operations in Latin America and the Caribbean with investment commitments that reached $5 billion to help drive the region's sustainable economic growth, promote innovation and build new infrastructure.
IFC invested about $2.5 billion from its account and mobilized another $2.5 billion from other investors during its fiscal year 2018, which ended in June 30. The investments were geared at supporting the region's private sector to create new jobs, tackle climate change and provide financing to small business owners.
After years of economic slowdown and recession, growth in Latin America and the Caribbean is expected to accelerate in 2019. However, the region remains one of the most unequal in the world, with increasing demands for better services, jobs, education and financial inclusion. Today, one in four people in the region live under the poverty line.
IFC's support enabled businesses in the region to provide more than 389,000 jobs in 2017, generate power for about 9.5 million people, provide education to 2.1 million students and deliver health care to more than 5.3 million patients.
"During the last 12 months we intensified our efforts to help the private sector implement new alternatives that can help solve the region's critical development challenges," said Gabriel Goldschmidt, IFC's director for Latin America and the Caribbean. "We are also helping the private sector innovate by, for example, supporting the first ever green bond issuance by a private bank in Argentina for $100 million, as well as using the proceeds of a local currency bond to finance affordable housing in Costa Rica."
Other landmark transactions in the last fiscal year include the support to the start-up GuiaBolso, a digital platform that offers financial services to underserved sectors of the population in Brazil, loans in Colombia and Mexico that will help boost housing loans to low-income sectors of the population, the structuring of a public-private sector partnership in Brazil for road concessions, and $115 million investments in the job-intensive tourism sectors of Saint Lucia and Dominican Republic. IFC also implemented 65 advisory projects in the region which focused on improving business regulations, promoting gender equality and working with the private sector to fight climate change.
During the next fiscal year, IFC will continue to focus on high-impact projects that can help mitigate climate change, promote financial inclusion and create new jobs.
See infographics with results for fiscal year 2018.