Search

 

Cablegate: Bfif Projects Emphasize Bilateral Exchange, Local

VZCZCXYZ0016
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLP #3331/01 3421904
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 081904Z DEC 06
FM AMEMBASSY LA PAZ
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1605
INFO RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 6371
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 3695
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 7565
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 4815
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 2067
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA 2140
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO 1961
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 4265
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 4704
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO 9289
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS LA PAZ 003331

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EB/CBA DWINSTEAD AND WHA/AND LPETRONI
COMMERCE FOR JANGLIN
TREASURY FOR SGOOCH

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ABUD AFIN BEXP BTIO ECON ETRD BL
SUBJECT: BFIF PROJECTS EMPHASIZE BILATERAL EXCHANGE, LOCAL
FINANCE

REF: STATE 160578

-------
SUMMARY
-------

1. (U) Post recently completed three Business Facilitation
Incentive Fund (BFIF) projects. This cable outlines outcomes
and expenditures for an indigenous entrepreneurs' learning
mission to Washington; a Tarija financial fair; and a series
of consultations with Partner Post Santiago. End summary.

------------------------------
LEARNING MISSION TO WASHINGTON
------------------------------

2. (U) With BFIF support, post funded the participation of
four indigenous entrepreneurs and small business owners in an
eight-member October 14-18 learning mission organized by the
American Chamber of Commerce of Bolivia (AmCham). The group
met representatives of several Washington organizations and
think tanks, including the United States Chamber of Commerce,
the Association of American Chambers of Commerce in Latin
America, the Center for Strategic and International Studies,
the National Endowment for Democracy, and the Center for
International Private Enterprise.

3. (U) AmCham General Manager Ana Maria Galindo reported
November 15 that the learning mission's participants acquired
new familiarity with the U.S. political economy, free market
economic policies, and liberal democratic institutions,
noting that all left impressed by U.S. political and economic
freedoms and hoped to work more closely with U.S. businesses.
The group promised to share their insight with La Paz and El
Alto counterparts.

4. (U) Galindo also reported a common message from U.S.
interlocutors: GOB officials should limit anti-U.S. rhetoric
and clarify public statements if they hope to further
bilateral cooperation and secure an extension of the Andean
Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act (ATPDEA).
Ambassador Peter DeShazo, Director of the Americas Program at
the Center for Strategic and International Studies,
emphasized the importance of establishing a single GOB
message and avoiding official contradictions, arguing that
conflicting messages hurt Bolivia's image and undermined GOB
officials' push for ATPDEA renewal. His remarks echoed those
of John Murphy, Vice President for Western Hemisphere Affairs
at the United States Chamber of Commerce, who called
attention to the need for a clear GOB position on bilateral
trade. All interlocutors encouraged the group to play a
greater role in Bolivian business and trade policy debates,
urging them to convey small business needs and concerns to
GOB officials.

5. (U) According to AmCham's expenditure report, the
organization spent $8,241.12 of its $9,100 grant. Post will
fax the report and related documentation to BFIF Program
Manager Dennis Winstead and EB/EX staff.

---------------------
TARIJA FINANCIAL FAIR
---------------------

6. (U) BFIF funds supported an October 26-27 financial fair
in Tarija, the capital of Bolivia's southernmost department.
This was the fourth in a series of workshops organized by
Chemonics International's USAID-supported Bolivian Trade and
Business Competitiveness (BTBC) project, which successfully
conducted similar programs in La Paz, Santa Cruz, and
Cochabamba. Workshop organizers sought to introduce Tarija
business owners to financial sector representatives, in hopes
of improving their understanding of the utility and
availability of certain financial products and the way
financial officers make risk assessments.

7. (U) BTBC Financial Specialist John Carrasco labeled the
workshop a great success, noting that 62 businesses
participated in banking and microfinance, leasing, capital
market, and venture capital working groups, far exceeding
BTBC expectations. Participants reported high degrees of
satisfaction with financial sector representatives' expertise
and workshop organization, with more than two-thirds saying
they were completely or mostly satisfied with opportunities
to explain their financing needs and explore different
financing mechanisms. Fourteen business owners later took
advantage of individual, personalized advisory services,
speaking privately with bank and microfinance organization
representatives to explore the availability of financing for
projects ranging from equipment leasing to long-term
liquidity management plans. Many companies reported existing
or potential links to U.S. firms.

8. (U) According to BTBC's expenditure report, the
organization spent $3,711.22 of its $3,825 grant. Post will
fax the report and related documentation to BFIF Program
Manager Dennis Winstead and EB/EX staff.

----------------------------------------
CONSULTATIONS WITH PARTNER POST SANTIAGO
----------------------------------------

9. (U) With BFIF support, post's economic/commercial officer
and FSN commercial specialist completed October 5-6
consultations with Foreign Commercial Service officers and
staff in Santiago. The two discussed the full range of
Department of Commerce overseas activities; reviewed
guidelines and best practices for the preparation of trade
leads, market research, Gold Key services, and other
products; considered ways of encouraging more lucrative
relationships between U.S. and Bolivian firms; and laid plans
for completing the La Paz installation of Department of
Commerce software and IT systems.

10. (U) Post spent $2,497.48 of the $2,575 budgeted for
consultations. Post will fax an expenditure report and
related documentation to BFIF Program Manager Dennis Winstead
and EB/EX staff.

-------
COMMENT
-------

11. (U) The three projects directly supported Mission efforts
to promote the benefits of bilateral trade and free market
economic policies; boost the capacity of Bolivian businesses
to attract investment and enter new markets; improve Bolivian
entrepreneurs' access to financial services; and strengthen
post's commercial services. Post appreciates EB's continued
support of its BFIF program.
URS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN News: UN Strongly Condemns Knife Attack Inside Nice Church Which Left Three Dead

The UN Secretary-General on Thursday strongly condemned a knife attack inside a French church in the southern French city of Nice, which reportedly left three worshippers dead. In a statement released by his Spokesperson, António Guterres extended his ... More>>

ALRANZ: Denounces US Senate Confirmation Of Judge Barrett

ALRANZ Abortion Rights Aotearoa denounces the US Senate’s confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court seat formerly held by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. “This action demonstrates the rank hypocrisy of the once-respected upper chamber ... More>>

UN News: Millions Affected As Devastating Typhoon Strikes Viet Nam

A major typhoon has struck central Viet Nam, affecting millions of people – including about 2.5 million children – in a region already reeling from the effects of severe floods, according to UN agencies in the country. There are also reports that 174 ... More>>

Reporters Without Borders: Julian Assange’s Extradition Hearing Marred By Barriers To Open Justice

After monitoring four weeks of evidence in the US extradition proceedings against Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reiterates concern regarding the targeting of Assange for his contributions to journalism, and calls ... More>>