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First Peso-Denominated Loan to Colombia Under Ex-Im Bank Foreign Currency Program


Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202) 565-3200

WASHINGTON, D.C.- The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) today approved a $15 million long-term loan guarantee to support the sale by Hewlett Packard, Houston, TX, and other U.S. suppliers of cellular equipment, software and services to Colombia Móvil (CM). The transaction will help support U.S. jobs throughout California and in Texas and Georgia.

The Citibank N. A. loan is the first in Colombia to be authorized by Ex-Im Bank to be denominated in pesos under Ex-Im Bank's Foreign Currency Guarantee Program. The Colombian peso was approved for use under the program on May 10, 2004.

We would like to do more information technology transactions similar to this, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman Philip Merrill. Knowledge-based and service exports have enormous potential for U.S. companies and their workers. We also hope to approve more transactions with Colombia under our Foreign Currency Program to support U.S. exports and jobs. Colombia is a market that offers many opportunities for U.S. exporters.

Suppliers on the contract include: Portal Software Inc., Cupertino, CA; Siebel Systems Inc., San Mateo, CA; Oracle Corp., Redwood city, CA; Intec Telecom Systems, Atlanta, GA; and Tibco Software Inc., Palo Alto, CA.

CM will use the technology for a combined operations support system and business support system for its general service mobile cellular radio network. The company sells cellular services under the brand name Ola and is the first domestically owned, nationwide provider of Personal Communications System (PCS) services in Colombia. CM was formed in 2003 through equal sponsor investments by two publicly-owned utilities, Empresas Públicas de Medellín (EPM) and Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Bogotá (ETB).

Ex-Im Bank, the official export credit agency of the United States, is in its 70th year of helping finance the sale of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets throughout the world, by providing loan guarantees, export credit insurance and direct loans. In fiscal year 2003, Ex-Im Bank authorized financing to support $14.3 billion of U.S. exports worldwide. For more information, visit www.exim.gov.