It seemed unlikely in 2000 that bankers could secure a $900 million, 17-year project finance loan for an oil development project in Ecuador. The country had just defaulted on its bonds, replaced its currency with the dollar and suffered an attempted military coup - all coming hard on the heels of a severe banking crisis in 1999. Political and economic risks kept lenders at arm's length. Still, WestLB and JP Morgan managed to pull together a senior secured $900 million loan to finance the construction of the $1.2 billion Oleoducto de Crudos...
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