Mexican Bank Banco del Bajio has joined IFC’s global trade finance programme to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) gain access to trade finance in Mexico.

Antonio Alves, IFC’s principal of short-term finance and regional head of the Latin America and Caribbean regions, tells GTR that Banco del Bajio can use the programme to diversify their exporting countries.

“By using the IFC guarantee (the bank) can access new markets where they don’t yet have trade lines approved or are not comfortable with the risks involved yet. It can also be used for import financing; IFC will increase Banbajio’s access to funding/liquidity and in turn it will lend to Mexican importers at competitive interest rates,” he adds.

IFC’s trade finance programme has issued more than US$3.9bn in guarantees to facilitate trade flows in Latin America and the Caribbean since its inception in 2006.

The programme has issued US$12bn in guarantees worldwide, although Latin America and the Caribbean has been the most active region for the past three fiscal years, representing about a third of the programme’s global volume.