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Finance Project Makes Housing Loans Accessible for Low-Income Families

October 23, 2012

Meg Galloway Pearce, 202-572-4045, or meg.pearce@clintonbushhaitifund.org

Finance Project Makes Housing Loans Accessible for Low-Income Families in Haiti

The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund Joins USAID and OPIC to Promote Home Ownership for More Haitians

WASHINGTON, DC – Today marked the launch of the Haiti Housing Finance Facility, a project that will make home mortgages available to low-income families in Haiti. The project, managed by Development Innovations Group (DIG), will also make repair loans available to homeowners and small business owners affected by the earthquake. The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund’s first-mover investment unlocked funding from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and was joined by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to make the $26 million project possible.

The Housing Finance Facility is an important contribution to the finance sector in Haiti where mortgages are not widely available. Many Haitians are still recovering from losses in the 2010 earthquake: more than 360,000 people continue to live in tents and other temporary housing.

“This project will make it possible for more Haitians to borrow the money they need to purchase or repair their homes and as a result, significantly improve their quality of life,” DIG President and CEO Franck Daphnis said. “It marks a key step towards achieving long-term, sustainable economic recovery in Haiti.”

More than 4,000 Haitian homeowners and small business owners can expect to benefit from the project’s three new loan products, which are targeted toward lower-income borrowers. These products include housing microfinance loans that start at $1,000; micro-mortgages that start at $5,000; and loans for the construction and repair of businesses that start at $3,000. They will be available through local Haitian finance organizations, including banks and microfinance institutions. More information on the program’s development is available through DIG at www.developinnovations.com.

The full $26 million project combines $3 million from the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, $17 million in loans from OPIC to create the three new loan products, and a $6 million grant from USAID for operating expenses and capacity building for loan providers. The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund’s participation was critical to unlocking OPIC’s financing and launching the facility.  

OPIC Executive Vice President Mimi Alemayehou explained the value of this partnership: “The fact that we can join with sister agency USAID and dedicated partners such as the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and DIG to provide ordinary Haitians greater access to housing finance speaks to our mutual commitment to support Haiti’s economic growth.”

“More accessible financing gives Haiti’s working poor the opportunity to own their own home and, in doing so, their own future,” Clinton Bush Haiti Fund CEO Gary Edson said. “These borrowers are also bolstering the construction sector, hiring building teams, and multiplying the positive impact the project has on Haiti’s economy.”

 

About the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund

The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded after Haiti’s January 12, 2010 earthquake, when President Barack Obama asked former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush to lead a major fundraising effort to assist the Haitian people to “build back better.” The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund initially responded to the catastrophe with millions in humanitarian relief. By the time the Fund began independent operations in May 2010, it transitioned to primarily serving its longer-term mission of sustainable reconstruction efforts designed to promote job growth and economic opportunity, and enabling Haiti to chart its own successful future. To learn more visit www.ClintonBushHaitiFund.org.

About Development Innovations Group

Development Innovations Group (DIG) is a private, international firm committed to fostering innovative solutions in the fields of financial services for the poor; urban, water, and infrastructure services; as well as fund management. DIG has worked in more than 30 countries, including in post-disaster and post-conflict settings, striving to catalyze home-grown solutions to universal development challenges.

About the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation

The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) is the U.S. Government’s development finance institution. It mobilizes private capital to help solve critical world challenges and in doing so, advances U.S. foreign policy. Because OPIC works with the U.S. private sector, it helps U.S. businesses gain footholds in emerging markets, catalyzing revenues, jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC achieves its mission by providing investors with financing, guarantees, political risk insurance, and support for private equity investment funds. It was established as an agency of the U.S. Government in 1971.

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