New York City, NY, September 20, 2010—
IFC CEO, Lars Thunell, Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive and US
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton today signed a memorandum of understanding
with the Korean garment firm Sae-A to develop a globally competitive industrial
park and garment operation in Haiti which is expected to create 10,000
"The World Bank Group is committed to working with the government
and people of Haiti and other partners to reduce poverty and support development
so that Haitians can benefit fully from participation in the global economy",
said Robert B. Zoellick, President of the World Bank Group.
The MOU will facilitate collaboration between the participants, which also
include the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB). The project includes
the development of basic infrastructure, including ports and roads, as
well as access to energy and logistics for a new industrial park and manufacturing
operation. IFC and the IADB would support the commercially sustainable
components of the project, subject to investment guidelines.
The industrial park and manufacturing operation would be located just north
of greater Port-au-Prince or, alternatively, on Haiti’s northern coast
between the cities of Cap Haitien and Ouanaminthe. This is consistent with
Haiti’s National Action Plan, which prioritizes these two regions as centers
for industrial development.
"We at IFC are glad to offer our expertise and support to SAE-A as
the company considers investing and creating jobs in Haiti", said
Lars Thunell, Executive Vice President and CEO of IFC.
Sae-A is a leading manufacturer and exporter of textiles and clothing in
Korea and a major supplier for Wal-Mart, Target and other U.S. clothing
brands such as Gap, Banana Republic and Levi’s. The company has over 20
factories worldwide, including in Nicaragua, Guatemala, Indonesia and Vietnam,
producing 1.4 million pieces of clothing a day. Sae-A founder and Chairman
Woong-Ki Kim signed the memorandum on behalf of the company
IFC is focused on helping rebuild Haiti and supporting economic growth
through investment and advisory services, including in the garment, infrastructure,
telecommunications, tourism, and finance sectors. Since the earthquake,
IFC has made $49.6 million available for nine projects. Four projects for
$14.6 million in the banking, garment, hotel, and mining industries are
under implementation, including a major energy project approved prior to
This year, IFC partnered with the Soros Foundation to finance the expansion
of an important garment manufacturer that will create 4,000 new jobs by
the end of 2011. The investment helps the firm capitalize on new
legislation that nearly triples duty-free quotas for Haitian clothing exports
to the United States.
IFC has intensified advisory services in Haiti to help companies and government
agencies retain and attract investors. This includes simplifying
the regulatory framework for special economic zones, improving the country’s
ports, and supporting the Haitian government’s plans to decentralize zones
outside of Port-au-Prince.
World Bank Support to Haiti
To help Haiti recover from the January 12 earthquake, the World Bank Group
has pledged US$479 million by mid-2011, including relieving Haiti’s debt
to the World Bank, which has been completed. As of today, the World Bank
has delivered over half of this support: US$91 million are available to
Government in the form of new projects, over US$106 million have been disbursed,
of which 40% is in the form of budget support. The remaining 60% has been
spent on community reconstruction, transitional offices and equipment for
the Ministry of Finance, repairing damaged bridges and roads, draining
canals, paying tuition fees for school children and providing them with
meals, strengthening Haiti’s resilience to disasters, and figuring out
how to better manage and recycle debris.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create
opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do
so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply
essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering
advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global
economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion
in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.