The Development Innovations Group (DIG) is pleased to announce that Le Levier Federation, the federation of credit unions in Haiti, has signed a loan agreement with DIG and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). With this $9 million loan from DIG’s Rebati Fund and its more than half a million members, Le Levier will be able to direct financing to its credit unions for housing and business development activities to spur economic growth. Combined with the original $8 million loan to Société Financière Haïtienne de Développement (SOFIHDES) in September 2013, DIG has successfully committed the entire $17 million of the Rebati Fund.
The Federation’s General Director, Mr. Jocelyn Saint-Jean, hailed the Le Levier team saying, “Le Levier is still a young institution. It is an important milestone to meet the rigorous institutional evaluation criteria of an international group such as OPIC/DIG and then to negotiate successfully such a significant loan. The signing of this loan agreement represents an affirmation of the Federation’s development, discipline and capabilities.”
This loan, along with the $8 million loan to SOFIHDES, provides critical capital for Haitian homeowners and businesses – financing that would otherwise have been unattainable for many members. The demand for medium and long term financing for housing loan products outpaces the Federation’s member savings, thus limiting its ability to infuse capital into the Haitian economy. With the loan from the Rebati Fund, Le Levier can expand its capital base and accelerate financing for an estimated 3,000 individual borrowers at nine of its member cooperative financial institutions over the next seven years.
The Rebati Fund (which means “rebuild” in Creole) is a $17 million fund launched by DIG in response to the catastrophic earthquake of January 2010 with financial support from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund. It provides Haitian financial institutions with long-term, affordable capital for up to ten years.