MANAGUA, NICARAGUA, October 16, 1998 ---
The International Finance Corporation is supporting the private sector
in six countries of Central America through a credit facility to BAC International
Bank that will be used to provide scarce, long-term financing to small-
and medium-sized businesses.
IFC today signed the first tranche of a US$30 million credit facility for
BAC. The project consists of three $10 million tranches with a maturity
of 10 years that will be used to finance projects in Nicaragua, Costa Rica,
El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Panama. The first tranche will be
directed to Nicaragua and Honduras where long-term financing is most needed.
The corporate sector in Central America, which consists largely of smaller
businesses that can be strong generators of jobs, faces substantial lags
in modernization, product quality and production efficiency. The project
will provide term financing to help those businesses improve competitiveness
and promote private sector-led growth and employment in the region.
BAC is one of the few financial institutions with a well-defined strategy
for Central America and a presence and track record in the region. Two
of BAC’s subsidiaries -- Banco de America Central, S.A. in Nicaragua and
Banco Credomatic, S.A. in Honduras -- will undertake lending under the
The agreement was signed today by Mr. Carlos Pellas, Chairman of BAC International
Corp., and by the Manager of the Latin America Financial Markets Division
of IFC, Ms. Haydee Celaya, who said the package demonstrates IFC’s strong
support for the region and its ability to build a modern, thriving private
IFC, part of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in
developing countries by financing investments, mobilizing capital in the
international financial markets and providing technical assistance and
advice to governments and businesses.