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IFC Vice President Visits Panama to Discuss Public-Private Partnership Agenda


In Bogota:
Darcy Antonin Crowe

Phone: +571 313 6449

E-mail: dcrowe@ifc.org


Panama City, January 17, 2020—Georgina Baker, IFC Regional Vice President for Latin America and the Caribbean and Europe and Central Asia, visited Panama earlier this week to discuss how to increase private investment in priority areas such as sustainable transportation, electricity distribution, and water and sanitation, as well as in low-income housing and access to finance for small and medium enterprises and women entrepreneurs. Baker was accompanied by Luc Grillet, IFC’s Senior Manager for Central American and the Caribbean and other IFC officials.

“Panama has experienced tremendous economic growth over the last several years, but the country continues to have significant needs in several areas, including infrastructure and public services,” said Baker. “The country’s new legislation for public-private partnerships, for which IFC and the World Bank had the opportunity of providing recommendations on global best-practices, can help the country attract incremental private investment and prioritize public sector spending for crucial sectors in a way that addresses Panama’s connectivity and inclusion agenda,” she said.


As part of the visit, Baker signed a preliminary agreement to provide advisory support to the Government of Panama for the preparation of three potential transportation projects under the new PPP framework. Panama signed into law last year a new framework for PPPs, which can help attract local and international private companies to invest and execute projects in the country that can generate jobs, improve the quality of life, and promote economic growth.


During the visit, Baker met with Rafael Sabonge, Minister of Public Works and Jose Alejandro Rojas, Minister of Facilitation of Private Investment, as well as other government officials.


In Panama, IFC has been especially active in ports and logistics projects and in helping diversify Panama’s energy matrix by financing clean energy initiatives, such as the Penonomé wind farm and AES Colón, the first integrated liquified natural gas-to-power project in Central America. IFC has also been supporting several investment projects that promote financial inclusion. At $786 million, IFC’s committed and outstanding portfolio in Panama is the largest among Central American countries.


About IFC

IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities where they are needed most. In fiscal year 2019, we delivered more than $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org

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