The Multilateral Investment Fund has approved a grant of $910,000 to help small and medium-sized enterprises in Argentina’s metallurgical sector become more productive by applying information and communication technology (ICT) tools.

The Association of Metallurgical Industries of Argentina (Adimra) will be in charge of the project to establish an ongoing process of technological access for companies in the sector to improve their efficiency and output. Adimra will provide US$900,000 in local counterpart financing for the initiative.

Argentina’s metallurgical sector consists of 25,000 mainly small and medium-sized enterprises, which employ 400,000 workers and account for 23% of the manufacturing industry’s value added.

The sector, severely impacted by the 2001 economic crisis, is in the process of rapid reactivation. Yet for this sector to be truly competitive in the international market it is imperative that the firms invest their resources in the incorporation of ICT tools to increase production capacity. The project will help the sector in establishing a process of adapting technology to small and medium-sized enterprises.

The successful implementation of the project will help small and medium-sized companies in the metallurgic sector gaining easy access to appropriate information and to ICT services.

The project will also assist regional metallurgical manufacturers’ associations develop the ability to connect supply with demand for technology. Finally, Argentina’s metallurgical sector as a whole will benefit from the collective experience of having established an ongoing process of applying technology by using ICT tools for small and medium-sized companies.

The Multilateral Investment Fund, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) Group, provides grants and investments to promote private sector development in Latin America and the Caribbean.