BRAVO Leadership Conversation: Mauricio Claver-Carone

From nearshoring to SME financing, the new IDB president discussed his agenda for the "private-sector led growth" of Latin America's recovery.

"Our job is to find opportunities and to take risks," said Mauricio Claver-Carone in the first BRAVO Leadership Conversation of 2021. In a discussion with AS/COA President and CEO Susan Segal, the new Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) president discussed his agenda for what will be a "private-sector led growth" of Latin America's recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Among the initiatives of the IDB's Vision 2025 is a strengthening of ties with the region's private sector, an increase in financing for small and medium enterprises, new climate financing, and a renewed emphasis on nearshoring to increase regional trade. 

However, "there’s going to be whiplash," said Claver-Carone, noting that while the Bank approved a record $21.6 billion in financing for the region in 2020, it will revert to some $12–16 billion in financing this year. That said, he believes it's time the United States embraced and expanded its role in the institution and the region at large. "The IDB is the lender of preference for the region. So it behooves the United States to support a capital increase for the Bank," said Claver-Carone.

The Florida native also mentioned the Bank's success in reassigning $1 billion toward coronavirus vaccine purchases and deployment. He highlighted other potential opportunities the IDB has identified, such as the $20 billion impact of harmonizing the region's trade agreements and a $72 billion increase in exports to the United States.