Another part of the summit’s itinerary this morning was the signing of a loan agreement between the Development Finance Corporation and the Inter-American Bank. The agreement will see the IDB lend fifteen million dollars to the DFC towards its capital. Speaking on the how the loan is categorized was Henry Anderson, DFC’s Chairman.
Henry Anderson, DFC Chairman: “DFC is a development finance institution. What that means we take additional risk and in times like this where you have COVID we provide what you call counter cyclical financing meaning when you need it the most we’re there. So we’re working with companies that generate foreign exchange or prevent us from having to use foreign exchange, that create job or to hold workers. So what you saw today was a signing of a loan for $15 million US dollars and that loan is in two parts $3 million is for working capital and $12 million is for what you call production oriented lending. It’s aimed at the micro,small and medium enterprises. The loans can go up to $500,000 US dollars or a million Belize. In terms of the $3 million dollar portion that’s for working capital so if you need to restart your business, you need to pay some bills, you need to buy some supplies, you need to get your workers going it allows for that and that’s a four year loan at around 5%. The bigger portion that’s for production oriented so if you need to fix your building, you need some new equipment, you need to maybe refinance a loan that you have that you’re kinda in trouble with or you need to do certain changes to your infrastructure or your facility to be able to live up to the COVID-19 protocols those are things. If you need to do climate resilient measures to make your company or your business be able to deal with climate change then those loans run again up to a million dollars at 7% and those can be paid over fifteen years. Obviously the risk profile of the company you know the industry that you’re in and everything will affect how long it is and what you need it for but the interesting thing is this goes for the micro, small, medium so although I mentioned that big figure it’s for any small business that was working during COVID or went under and needs to come back we can work to help bring them back.”