The and the have announced the launch of a $20 million investment fund to support small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) in Haiti.
Established in response to a call from Haitian President René Préval and Prime Minister Jean Max Bellerive for more and better tools to help Haitian entrepreneurs create jobs and make sustainable improvements in their businesses and communities, the fund will provide equity and financing for SMEs that lack access to traditional financing and capital markets. A project of the , in collaboration with CGSGI and the Slim Foundation, the fund will be market-driven and will seek financial returns on its investments as well as returns on the fund as a whole. Profits will be re-invested in the fund to enable additional future investments.
The fund and its investments will be aligned with the Haitian government's priorities, institutions, and processes, including the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission and its procedures. It will also work with local institutions, provide technical assistance to the businesses in which it invests, and welcome future investors.
"The fund we are announcing today recognizes the important role small- and medium-sized enterprises play in helping to build a modern, self-sustainable economy that will allow Haiti to one day stand on its own two feet," said former President Bill Clinton. "With this fund, we hope to empower entrepreneurs with the tools to transform their aspirations, hard work, and good ideas into profitable businesses that create jobs and help fuel the growth of the Haitian economy."