Press Release: DFC Loan to Produbanco to Drive Inclusive Development in Ecuador
U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) today announced a $150 million loan to Banco de la Producción S.A. (Produbanco) in Ecuador. Produbanco will utilize DFC financing to on-lend to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and women borrowers which promote gender equity and inclusion; have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic; and are promoting green development projects that combat climate change. DFC’s investment was announced at a signing ceremony attended by U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor Daleep Singh, Principal Deputy Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Ricardo Zuniga, DFC Managing Director for Latin America Felizia Bacall, and DFC Chief Operating Officer David Marchick.
DFC is proud to support Produbanco in addressing three of the most challenging issues we see in Ecuador today – the COVID-19 pandemic, gender gaps in financing, and climate change,” said David Marchick, DFC’s Chief Operating Officer. “Produbanco’s focus on lending to women borrowers and SMEs in underserved areas promises to drive impactful economic development for the people of Ecuador.”
“This transaction constitutes a landmark in the relationship between Produbanco and DFC. It underscores Produbanco’s strength and capabilities – in particular, our teams’ ability to mobilize resources into the economy as a catalyst for business opportunities and job creation. We are committed to bridging the gender gap, addressing the challenges of climate change, and supporting small and medium sized enterprises out of the crisis generated by COVID-19,” stated Ricardo Cuesta, Produbanco’s CEO.
U.S. Ambassador to Ecuador Michael J. Fitzpatrick said, “This latest in a series of loan agreements by DFC with Ecuadorian banking institutions is a clear demonstration of the U.S. commitment to Ecuadorian entrepreneurs as engines of the country’s growth, and particularly those small and medium enterprises which value and harness the contributions of all sectors of society to that growth, in developing Ecuador’s enormous potential in an environmentally sustainable way.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an economic downturn in Ecuador, worsening an already steep financial gap for women entrepreneurs, and limiting prospects for continued growth and development. DFC financing for Produbanco will address these challenges by driving working capital to less-developed sectors and regions in Ecuador, including rural and underserved communities. Of the loan proceeds, at least 30 percent will support DFC’s 2X Women’s Initiative, at least 20 percent will support “green lending” in support of climate-conscious projects, and the remaining 50 percent will support other SME loans, which specifically help boost COVID-19 economic recovery.
Produbanco is the latest DFC investment in Ecuador’s private sector, joining a portfolio of $713 million in agency commitments.
While in Ecuador, the US delegation met with President Guillermo Lasso and high-ranking members of the Ecuadorian government. The delegation also met with a group of representatives from across Ecuador’s private sector and civil society to discuss business and development needs in the country. These meetings were part of a listening tour for the Build Back Better World Initiative (B3W), a values-driven, high-standard, transparent, and catalytic infrastructure partnership led by major democracies to further meet the enormous infrastructure need in low- and middle-income countries.
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