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OPIC Selects the Investment Risk Management Agency as Originator in Enterprise Development Agency

March 5, 2010

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) has selected the Investment Risk Management Agency (IRMA), an agency established by the Ministry of Finance of Georgia, to serve as an Originator for a growing alliance with the private sector designed to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) expanding into emerging markets overseas. 

The alliance, the Enterprise Development Network (EDN), is expanding the ability of OPIC – the U.S. government agency charged with facilitating U.S. private sector investment in emerging markets – to provide financing to SMEs doing business in developing countries.

Through the support of financial institutions, business consultants, associations, law firms and regional investment promotion agencies, EDN is designed to enhance SME access to OPIC products and services. By empowering such service providers, the network is resulting in more efficient, cost-effective delivery of services to American businesses.

IRMA was established as a governmental agency under the supervision of the Ministry of Finance of Georgia on March 23, 2009 to provide foreign investors with high quality political risk management and fund raising services. IRMA’s mission is to contribute to economic growth and development by promoting foreign investment in Georgia and assisting foreign investors and exporters in realizing their business outcomes. It complements the private sector in managing risks and financial resources associated with foreign direct investment ( ).

On November 5, 2009, IRMA became the first governmental agency to be named an EDN loan and political risk insurance originator. IRMA is also the first among Georgia-based companies to serve as an EDN Originator. Under IRMA’s auspices, the EDN initiative was introduced to the Georgian marketplace and local companies were offered assistance in applying for EDN originator designation.