Press Releases
print

IFC to Help Improve Infrastructure in Bogotá, Colombia


In IFC:
Adriana Gomez

Phone: +1(202) 458 5204.
E-mail:
Agomez@ifc.org


Bogotá, Colombia, August 28, 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today signed an agreement with Colombia’s capital city, Bogotá, to help rehabilitate its road network and build sidewalks and bikeways.

IFC’s $45 million financing is provided through a joint initiative with the World Bank that supports municipalities in delivering key infrastructure services, including water, wastewater management, transportation, and electricity and other local public entities in developing countries, without sovereign guarantees.

“This transaction, together with others recently executed by the district, represents further progress in infrastructure investment for the city. It enables the city to continue diversifying its sources of financing for major projects. It also helps the city depend less on the central government for resources and minimizes the number of guarantees and pledges against revenue that the city must establish to raise the funds it needs,” said Juan Ricardo Ortega López, Bogotá’s Secretary of Finance.


“The financing is also part of IFC and the World Bank’s strategy to promote sustainable growth in Colombia by supporting key infrastructure projects,” said Robert Albisseti, IFC Country Manager. “It will help meet the growing needs for transportation in a city with more than 7 million residents and improve access and quality of public services to a larger number of people. We hope to continue partnering with Bogotá to carry out more projects.”


This is IFC’s second project with the city. IFC recently helped Bogotá simplify a system for inspecting companies’ environment, health, and safety planning and fire prevention. This effort helped reduce the number of days for inspections from 262 to 15, or 95 percent, and consolidated the procedures into a single process. The new procedures also helped the private sector save about $41 million, and the city of Bogotá around $4 million.

Bogotá is the first city in South America to contract with IFC for this type of financing without a guarantee from the central government or any other source. This attests to the confidence that lenders and domestic and international investors have in the city. The loan will be repaid over a period of 17 years, which includes the two-year grace period on the principal.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. IFC's vision is that people should have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07, IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through syndications and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.

IFC’s strategy in Colombia focuses on key sectors that promote the country’s financial development. These include public-private partnership infrastructure projects such as bridges, highways, and airports that improve the country’s competitiveness. IFC also cooperates with leading commercial groups in Colombia to modernize and expand their activities globally. An important part of IFC’s strategy in the country is to improve access to finance for microenterprises and small and medium enterprises, as well as to create a favorable investment climate. As of March 2008, IFC’s total portfolio of commitments in the country had reached $828 million.

In the Office of the City of Bogota:
Patricia Parada
Phone: (57+1) 3385004/02
E-mail: pparada@shd.gov.co