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The OPIC Blog


An OPIC anniversary: Good business, good government

December 11, 2014

By Elizabeth Littlefield  President and Chief Executive Officer, OPIC Thirty years ago this week, OPIC, the U.S. Government’s development finance institution, celebrated a rare feat in the federal government: it made good on its promise to pay back every cent of the $106 million that Congress had allocated to start the agency in 1971. The occasion was heralded by President Ronald
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From mom-and-pop to job engine: How OPIC helped hundreds of small businesses in the West Bank

December 09, 2014

This post by James C. Polan, OPIC’s Vice President for Small and Medium Enterprise Finance, was originally featured on the U.S. State Department’s DipNote blog. The original post can be viewed here. Small businesses create jobs. It’s a widely accepted economic truth, but it’s not the whole story. The fact is, small businesses need money to grow, but they often
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What urbanization means for development

November 12, 2014

Multiple OPIC projects address urban development challenges, often by supporting financing to small businesses that will create jobs. Nicholas Aoama Oyiek is a garage owner in Nairobi, Kenya, who employs 20 people and was able to obtain financing to build his business with the help of an OPIC backed private equity fund. Read more. In 1950, less than one-third of
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Featured photo: Bringing healthcare to rural Hondurans

October 24, 2014

Doña Chila became a volunteer community pharmacist serving the 2,500 residents of El Tigre Island in Honduras through a training program provided by a local partner of social investment fund Global Partnerships. Each day she counsels at least 15 customers about recommended medications and dosages. Global Partnerships is an OPIC client that provides small microfinance loans in rural communities and
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Geothermal key to powering Africa

October 23, 2014

By Stephen Morel Climate Finance Specialist, OPIC In the next three years, Africa is expected to see an unprecedented amount of geothermal power come online. Through President Obama’s Power Africa initiative, OPIC is poised to be a key player in unlocking the potential of geothermal on the continent. During the Geothermal Resources Council’s 38th Annual Meeting in September, attendees explored how
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Littlefield on the future of energy in Africa

October 14, 2014

OPIC President and CEO Elizabeth Littlefield described the momentum behind President Obama’s Power Africa initiative, which she said has generated strong interest among developers who until recently had not considered doing business in Africa. “The world is waking up to the fact that business can be a force for good and has a critical role to play,” Littlefield told Devex
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Improving lives through development: Highlights from OPIC’s Annual Report on Development Impact

September 30, 2014

By Margaret Kuhlow Vice President, OPIC Office of Investment Policy OPIC seeks to support projects that will serve as foundations for sustained economic growth, and the projects we support typically bring far-reaching benefits. A power plant, for example, has the immediate benefit of bringing new electricity to market. But it may also create jobs, generate tax revenue and introduce advanced
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Development, National Security And OPIC: Secretary Kerry Connects the Dots

September 24, 2014

Secretary of State John Kerry offered a sweeping view of the power of global development last week, when he spoke at USAID’s Frontiers in Development conference. Kerry stressed that extreme poverty and other major world development challenges presented challenges not only to “our values and our sense of humanity” but also “to our security,” and that they could best be
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One Big Continent, One Big Summit, Three Big Lessons

September 10, 2014

By Elizabeth Littlefield, OPIC President and CEO This blog post originally appeared on the U.S. State Department’s DipNote blog Just last month, President Obama hosted a spectacular and historic summit in Washington of more than 40 heads of state from Sub-Saharan Africa. Never before had there been such an ambitious American outreach to this enormous continent, a fact all the more
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Powering Africa: The off-grid challenge

September 09, 2014

President Obama’s Power Africa initiative harnesses the power of private sector investment to help the more than 600 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa, who lack access to energy. It’s a staggering number, but also one that does not fully capture the extent of energy poverty on the continent, or the challenge of delivering power to many of the more rural
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