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EXPORT-IMPORT BANK CHAIRMAN AND REPUBLIC OF COLOMBIA MINISTER OF THE ENVIRONMENT SIGN MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING FOR ENVIRONMENTAL COOPERATION

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 29, 1998

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

David W. Carter (202) 565-3200 - Ken Murphy (202) 565-3200

Ex-Im Bank has had a commitment to environmentally friendly development for many years, said Chairman Harmon, and I am very pleased to be implementing this important and innovative program with the government of Colombia. Colombia's natural resources are valuable to the entire world, so to the extent that we can help preserve them, we are helping to preserve our planet for many generations to come.

The Memorandum furthers the principles of cooperation between the Republic of Colombia and the United States for the protection of the environment. Specifically, the Memorandum commits Ex-Im Bank to working with Colombia's Ministry of the Environment to finance purchases of U.S. goods and services that are environmentally beneficial, or that can be used in environmental rehabilitation. Ex-Im Bank will offer very attractive financing terms for Colombia's imports of U.S.-made, environmentally beneficial products. Colombia's Ministry of the Environment may support these imports through an environment fund it is currently establishing with wastewater treatment fees and polluter fines. U.S. companies will have a greater ability to participate in environmental infrastructure projects in Colombia, and may qualify for Ex-Im Bank's preferential financing for environmentally beneficial goods and services.

Ex-Im Bank is an independent U.S. government agency that assists in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to industrializing and developing markets all over the world by providing loans, loan guarantees, and export credit insurance. In fiscal year 1998, Ex-Im Bank supported $12.8 billion of U.S. exports.