Fonplata funds small businesses in Uruguay

Fonplata funds small businesses in Uruguay

Coronavirus Loans Economy & Policy Uruguay Argentina Latin America Bolivia

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Fonplata, the regional development bank for the Río de la Plata basin, said it approved $15 million in financing for a small business emergency loan program in Uruguay.

Uruguay's National Development Agency, or ANDE, will use the funding for the first phase of a stimulus program for micro, small and medium-sized businesses, Fonplata said in a press release on Thursday. The program is expected to help 65,000 businesses, it added.

"This first phase of the program will be complemented by a second operation that will ensure its sustainability in the short term," Fonplata said.

Fonplata also said the funding helps ANDES establish a long-term lending program for micro and small businesses.

Uruguay's Economy Minister Azucena Arbeleche said in late March that the country wanted to get $2.5 billion in credit from multilateral lenders to take on the coronavirus. Since then, Uruguay has borrowed $125 million from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and engaged the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to work on the sale of yen-denominated bonds

Fonplata has disbursed $1.5 million grants to its member nations – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – to buy medical equipment and other supplies. It also approved $53 million in loans to Argentina, including $25 million to provide meals to schoolchildren in the province of Buenos Aires and $15 million to build emergency hospitals.