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Ministerials Paragraphs Related to the Theme Paragraphs VII Summit
Date:  4/28/2014 
Women entrepreneurshipBanking (weB)
women entrepreneurshipBanking (weB) is an initiative to work with financial institutions in the region to help them put in place lending models that support growth in women-led businesses. The weB encourages banks and other financial institutions to test innovative, inclusive lending models by offering two kinds of incentives. First, the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), through its Line of Activity for Promoting Small Enterprise Financing, offers up to $5 million in technical assistance grants to transfer knowledge of effective lending models for women-owned SMEs and to train loan officers and credit managers in these products and services. Second, the Structured and Corporate Finance Department (SCF), through its beyondBanking program, targets up to $50 million in credit lines, partial credit guarantees and risk-sharing mechanisms to strengthen tenor and liquidity in financial institutions seeking to expand loans offered to this underserved client group. This unique combination of capital and technical assistance maximizes the success of forward-looking financial institutions to ensure that women-owned SMEs have equal access to finance.

Already, weB has achieved several early-stage results, enrolling a number of institutions to receive financing and/or technical assistance. The number of institutions enrolled has been much higher than anticipated (SCF’s aggregated approval amount has exceeded the initial target of $50 million, while the original MIF contribution to weB will be fully committed in 2014) and many financial institutions are already beginning to implement products to directly target women entrepreneurs. At the project level, there are 11 projects in 9 countries. The weB pipeline for 2014 and 2015 remains strong. Additionally, the enthusiasm for weB generated demand to launch a panel on ‘’The Women’s Market: Are you overlooking the world’s largest emerging economy” sponsored in part by MIF and SCF, in November 2013 at the largest Latin American Banking Conference hosted by the Latin American Banking Federation (FELABAN). Taking the advantage of this momentum, the weB team has also launched several studies to learn firsthand about women’s access to financial products and services. For example, in partnership with Entrepreneurial Finance Lab (EFL) the team will be assessing the differences in characteristics between male and female entrepreneurs, given the rich database constructed by the use of EFL’s psychometric credit assessment tool. Also, the team has been designing a study on the importance of access to savings on women’s business start-ups and their growth. Furthermore, to accelerate implementation among financial intermediaries, the MIF became a sponsor of the Global Banking Alliance for Women (GBA), a leading knowledge exchange platform of financial institutions driving women’s wealth creation around the world. GBA facilitates knowledge transfer to LAC financial institutions that implement IDB projects under the framework of weB initiative. GBA organizes study tours and best practices workshops, and develops practical “how-to” manuals; benchmarks and performance indicators; case studies; research; and mentoring programs among member financial institutions. So far, four LAC banks became GBA members, two more are in the process of becoming members, and more are expected to follow. Based on this growing LAC presence in GBA, the IDB decided to host the next GBA Annual Summit (September 2014). With the purpose of knowing better the market conditions for women-owned businesses, the MIF launched Women's Entrepreneurial Venture Scope (WEVentureScope). The WEVentureScope is an index that assesses the environment for supporting and growing women's micro, small, and medium-sized businesses in 20 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. It is a dynamic benchmarking model that measures business operating risks, access to finance, capacity and skill-building opportunities, and the presence of social services. According to the study, Chile, Peru, and Colombia have the best environments for female entrepreneurs.

Beneficiaries: Women-owned SMEs

Partners and financing: Global Banking Alliance for Women, The Economist Intelligence Unit, Women’s Finance Hub of the SME Finance Forum, Entrepreneurial Finance Lab.
Paragraphs: 6 Paragraphs VII Summit: -

Date:  4/28/2014 
Technical Support Network of Employment Services in LAC
The overall objective of this technical cooperation (TC) is to improve the institutional and technical capacity of the Public Employment Services (PES) to expand its potential to support workers to get jobs faster and better than those obtained without support intermediary services. The specific objectives to improve the management and monitoring and evaluation of labor market policies of the Public Employment Services, in partnership with training institutions and the private sector. Currently, the Red SEALC has 16 member countries. The first phase of the Red SEALC concluded in April 2013. This second phase of the Red SEALC incorporates the best practices of the first phase grouped in four components and continue to operate under the model of exchange and technical support horizontally between PES and ministries of labor in the region, with the guidance and support Bank. Efforts will also be made during this second stage of the Red SEALC, to affiliate all member countries of the Bank. The TC seeks to improve labor markets in member countries of the Red. LAC countries need initiatives that contribute to improving the performance of labor markets by increasing the ability to create more productive jobs, higher paying and increasing, sustainably, the social security coverage.

Activities will include: i) organizational development and association with the private sector; ii) employment and training integrated services through a single window; iii) training of employment and firms counselors; iv) unemployment insurance; v) information and monitoring systems for employment management, employment portals and labor observatories; vi) quality systems based on ISO, competencies, and other international systems; vii) management for results and impact evaluation studies; and viii) documenting best practices.

Bahamas, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, Panamá and Dominican Republic

Partners and financing:
The governments of the member countries co-finance the operation of the Red SEALC providing in-kind support through technical assistance provided by officials of the PES.
Paragraphs: 6 Paragraphs VII Summit: -

Date:  4/28/2014 
Salud Mesoamérica 2015 Initiative
The Salud Mesoamérica 2015 Initiative (SM2015) is an innovative public/private partnership which seeks to reduce health equity gaps in Mesoamerica faced by those living in extreme poverty. The Initiative’s goal is to back the efforts of Mesoamerican governments in reaching the health Millennium Development Goals through investments in projects with proven effectiveness for the poorest 20 percent of the population, mainly women and children under five years of age. The Initiative will implement transformative solutions by expanding coverage as well as increasing the quality and use of the basic public health services in the areas of reproductive, maternal, neonatal and child health care, maternal and child nutrition, and immunization. The Initiative expects to close the health coverage and quality gap for the poorest 20 percent of the population. This is a five-year Initiative scheduled for completion in 2017. SM2015 is implementing evidence-based health interventions for improving health among the poor through its results-based financing model. In this model, a portion of the funding is disbursed after governments reach their targets for (a) broadening coverage, (b) improving the quality of health services provided and (c) adopting evidence based technical and fiscal health policies. Targets are measured independently from time to time for disbursement of the performance portion of the funding.

Nutrition: Chronic malnutrition and anemia are common problems in the Mesoamerican region, especially among children under five years of age and women in their reproductive years. To overcome this situation in the region, the main intervention package includes provision of micronutrients, education on breastfeeding, hygiene and immunization, and appropriate complementary feeding practices, vitamin A, zinc, and prenatal supplements with a focus on areas where there is a high prevalence of stunting, micronutrient deficiencies, food insecurity and poverty. Immunizations: Although diseases that can be avoided through vaccination are close to being eliminated, complete, timely vaccination of children between 12 and 24 months of age in the poorest 20 percent of the population continues to be a significant challenge. To broaden coverage and strengthen immunization systems, these high-impact actions have been proposed: 1.- Develop projects that allow knowledge gaps to be filled in the area of increasing coverage in hard to reach areas. 2.- Strengthen immunization policies, procedures and permanent availability of supplies. 3.- Implement evidence based best practices, such as integrating vaccination with other health-related services. Maternal child health / Reproductive health: There have been considerable improvements in the basic indicators in maternal, child, and reproductive health in the Mesoamerican region in the past years. In order to reduce maternal and neonatal deaths, especially among the poorest population in rural areas, the following interventions are recommended: 1.- Implementation of quality basic service in obstetric emergencies and interventions related to infections, eclampsia, hemorrhages, and miscarriages, as well as community training in these aspects. 2.- Basic services for newborns, especially those who are underweight at birth and/or have health complications. 3.- Providing at least five methods of family planning, as well as counselling for women and men to make informed decisions on contraceptive choices, and increasing competences of providers in service delivery.

Mesoamerica countries: seven countries of Central America (Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama) as well as the State of Chiapas of Mexico.

Partners and financing:
142m donation funding plus 55 m from domestic funding from countries • The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Carlos Slim Health Institute (ICSS), the Government of Spain, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the eight beneficiary countries to also contribute with domestic funding.
Paragraphs: 2, 5 Paragraphs VII Summit: -

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