Economy October 30, 2019 | 11:31 am

New loans promote leading microfinance institutions in the Dominican Republic

Press Release

Unedited translation:

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic – Citi announced today together with the United States Embassy in Santo Domingo the launch of a credit facility, which will allow the main microfinance institutions of the Dominican Republic to expand their services to 23,000 entrepreneurs / as more, of which 14,000 will be women.

In the Dominican Republic, just over half (56%) of adults have a bank account. Access is lower for low-income households across the country, with a 23% gap between people with higher incomes and those with lower incomes.

ADOPEM, founded to promote the financial and social inclusion of vulnerable populations in the Dominican Republic – namely women entrepreneurs and young entrepreneurs – currently serves more than 400,000 clients. ADOPEM will receive 10 million dollars to expand its microfinance efforts, an operation that marks the beginning of inclusive financial transactions for Citi in the Dominican Republic.

“We are proud to be able to support ADOPEM’s efforts and encourage small businesses to develop and grow. Citi is recognized worldwide for its long-term leadership in this area and we believe that we have a fundamental responsibility to help expand financial inclusion institutions in our country, “said Máximo Vidal, General Manager of Citi in the Dominican Republic.

This transaction is part of the Global Inclusive Finance Framework, an innovative public-private partnership between Citi and the Corporation for Private Investment Abroad (OPIC) of the United States government, which allows inclusive businesses and local micro-financial institutions Emerging markets extend microcredits to borrowers who need support. Under the Citi / OPIC programs, Citi companies in the countries, the Citi Inclusive Finance division and the Export Agency Financing Unit of the Citi Institutional Clients Group have financed $ 505.5 million in debt capital for 53 inclusive companies in 26 countries, helping to catalyze the efforts of more than 1.37 million micro entrepreneurs, of which 87% are women.

“At Citi, our goal is to leverage our global presence and our innovative partnership with OPIC to meet the needs of unbanked and under-banked households in emerging economies,” said Jorge Rubio Nava, Director of Inclusive Finance at Citi. “These transactions demonstrate how, by working with local intermediaries such as ADOPEM, we can provide sustainable financial services that allow low-income entrepreneurs to achieve greater independence and financial resilience.”

The United States ambassador to the Dominican Republic, Robin S. Bernstein, commented: “OPIC is a key element offered by the United States government to promote foreign direct investment in developing countries. Loan and insurance programs give greater access to financing by micro, small and medium enterprises in the world and promote the creation of infrastructure, business opportunities, housing development for low-income people and other important development projects . ”

In a meeting held in March with Caribbean leaders to discuss issues related to trade, investment in energy and security, President Trump reaffirmed the commitment of the United States to work with its partners in the region to foster economic growth, counteract Predatory investment practices and strengthen security cooperation. Last May, David Bohigian, interim president and CEO of OPIC, the financing institution for the development of the United States government, visited the Dominican Republic, as a continuation of President Trump’s meeting with President Medina in Mar -a-Lago.

With a portfolio exceeding DOP 8,800 million and a history of more than 30 years as a pioneer of microfinance, ADOPEM has transformed the microfinance industry in the Dominican Republic. ADOPEM owns approximately 30% of the participation of the microfinance market in the country through a network of 74 branches and 200 non-bank correspondents, and employs approximately 1,450 people throughout the Dominican Republic.