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Bancamía and IFC sign cooperation agreement to develop financial products and services for Venezuelan migrants in Colombia


In Mexico:
Mauricio González Lara
T: (5255) 3098 0248
Mail: mgonzalezlara@ifc.org

Bogotá, Colombia, August 31, 2020. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, and Bancamía, an entity of the BBVA Microfinance Foundation and the first microfinance bank created in Colombia, signed a cooperation agreement to strengthen the offer of financial products and services to Venezuelan migrants, especially women, with the aim of helping them successfully integrate into the country's social and economic dynamics.

Promoted by The Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi), the agreement contemplates implementing approach tools that allow knowing the needs, challenges, preferences, experiences and aspirations of Venezuelan migrants in everything related to the use of financial and banking services.

The project is supported by Facility for Investment Climate Advisory Services (FIAS), a collaborative initiative managed by IFC between donor countries, philanthropic organizations and the World Bank Group whose objective is to facilitate reforms that improve the investment climate in emerging countries.

“As a result of this agreement, pilot tests will be developed with the objective of offering financial products and services specifically designed for Venezuelan migrants, while verifying how they meet the needs identified during the approach stage. Thanks to the use of our physical and digital channels, we will cover some cities where Venezuelan migrants are geographically concentrated, so that we will be able to have a photograph of their needs and behavior of use, ”said Miguel Ángel Charria Liévano, Executive President of Bancamía.

The financial entity has served more than 3,800 Venezuelan migrants: 42% dedicated to service activities, 35% to commerce, 16% transformation, and 7% agricultural.

In the context of the economic crisis caused by COVID-19, supporting micro and small businesses, especially those run by women entrepreneurs, is crucial to promote the integration of immigrants into the economic life of the country. The project will be carried out remotely to comply with the security protocols implemented due to the pandemic.

“One of the most inspiring aspects of this agreement is its special focus on gender. Half of the new savings and credit accounts derived from this project will be for women. At IFC we are totally convinced that one of the best ways to promote the financial inclusion of migrants is through the empowerment of women who seek a better life horizon for themselves and their families through entrepreneurship. We are honored and grateful to Bancamía for being part of this alliance in favor of migrants,” said Elizabeth Martínez de Marcano, manager for the Andean Region of IFC.

The International Finance Corporation works with the private sector to identify opportunities for migrants and their host communities in four areas: financial inclusion and promotion of entrepreneurship, delivery of basic services such as education and energy, establishment of policies that promote business creation and learning lessons shared with allies and stakeholders.

About Bancamía
Banco de las Microfinanzas Bancamía S.A is an entity created in 2008, which is part of the BBVA Microfinance Foundation Group. It is the first microfinance bank created in Colombia, with the objective of facilitating access to financial products and services for Colombians with fewer economic resources, with a special focus on microentrepreneurs, who, with their production units, transform their quality of life and the country's economy. It currently has coverage in 29 departments and in more than 950 municipalities in Colombia. Visit www.bancamia.com.co

About FIAS
The Facility for Investment Climate Advisory Services (FIAS) is a collaboration between donor countries, philanthropic organizations and the World Bank Group whose objective is to facilitate reforms that improve the investment climate in emerging countries to promote competitive markets and sustainable private investments in sectors that contribute to growth and poverty reduction. The FIAS program is managed by IFC. For more information, visit www.thefias.info

About We-Fi
The Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) is a collaborative partnership among the 14 governments that have made financial contributions, six multilateral development banks that serve as implementing partners, and other public and private stakeholders. We-Fi was formally established in October 2017 as a Financial Intermediary Fund hosted by the World Bank. We-Fi invests in programs and projects that help unlock billions of dollars in financing to address the full range of barriers facing women entrepreneurs—increasing access to finance, markets, technology, and mentoring, while strengthening policy, legal and regulatory frameworks. As one of the We-Fi Implementing Partners, IFC supports private sector clients with investment and advisory services to expand financial services and market access for women-owned/led firms, as well as increasing the capacity of women entrepreneurs to run high-growth businesses. For more information, visit www.we-fi.org

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 in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In fiscal year 2019, we invested more than $19 billion in private companies and financial institutions in 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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