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HEAD OF IFC TO VISIT CENTRAL AMERICA


Michael Stopford
Phone: (202) 473-3969
Fax: (202) 676-0365
E-mail: MStopford@Worldbank.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 2—Mr. Jannik Lindbaek, Executive Vice President of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), will lead an IFC delegation to Central America from 2 to 6 December 1996. The IFC delegation will consult with government and industry leaders on initiatives to encourage private sector development and discuss IFC’s ongoing activities in the region. This is Mr. Lindbaek’s first official visit to Central America.

IFC is a member of the World Bank Group and is the largest multilateral source of equity and loan financing for private sector projects in developing countries. Since 1992 the Corporation has approved investments totalling US$375.3 million in Central America’s private sector and has a strong investment program foreseen for the next three years. In the same period, in Costa Rica IFC has approved investments worth US$36.6 million, in Honduras US$48.2 million, in El Salvador US$72.5 million, and in Guatemala US$153 million. IFC has also assisted the governments of El Salvador and Costa Rica in reformulating certain aspects of their foreign investment regulations.


IFC’s investment and advisory work in Central America is geared to support the region’s reconstruction efforts and economic resurgence. In particular, IFC activities emphasize general manufacturing, infrastructure, agribusiness and the capital markets sectors. In addition, El Salvador features as one of the countries selected for the “Extending IFC’s Reach” pilot project, whereby IFC will establish an expanded field presence and seek to assist the local private sector by developing and financing smaller projects in these sectors.


During his visit to the region, Mr. Lindbaek will meet with senior government officials and business and financial sector representatives, including exporters’ associations. He will also visit the sites of various projects in the region supported by IFC investments. In addition, he will meet with the staff of ASECA (Asesoría Empresarial Centroaméricana), a regional project development facility established with the help of IFC and headquartered in Costa Rica.


Accompanying Mr. Lindbaek will be Mr. Helmut Paul, Director of IFC’s Latin America Department, Mr. Hugh Henry May, IFC’s Manager for Central America and Caribbean, and Mr. Julio Lastres, Manager, Capital Markets, Latin America and Caribbean. The World Bank/IFC Executive Director, Mr. Enzo del Bufalo, and Alternate Executive Director, Mr. Roberto Jimenez-Ortiz, will also accompany Mr. Lindbaek on his visit to Central America.