Mexico City, Monday , September 29th, 2008.

Today, Grameen Trust, international affiliation of Grameen Bank and Fundación Carlos Slim AC, announced the new alliance Grameen-Carso which will donate micro credits to the neediest people in Mexico.  Grameen Trust and Fundación Carlos Slim will have equal investments in this alliance and will start operating in areas with higher rate of poverty in Mexico.

Fundación Carlos Slim will provide an initial assets of 5 million dollars and guarantee other 40 million dollars for credit lines of this strategic alliance. Grameen Trust will be the manager of this alliance with experienced people in micro credits brought from Grameen Back.  In the long run, Green’s managers will capacitate local managers in order to be in charge of procedures in Mexico.

Grameen-Carso will confer micro credit lines with lower interest rates than other micro credit suppliers in Mexico.  This project will be a social company; all the profits will be re-invested in order to increase its operations.

Grameen Bank will be using its innovative model developed in Bangladesh to offer micro credit lines to the neediest people in Mexico to help them to create or expand small business. These micro credits will not require any other security guaranties as it will be using an original system in which the borrowers will be supported by themselves so they have the commitment to pay their loans. Also, borrowers will generate savings during the period of credit with Grameen-Carso.

Using this successful model developed by Grameen Bank in Bangladesh which attends 7 million borrowers, as well as other popular endeavors used around the world, Grameen- Carso alliance expects that the incomes generated by the borrower’s business let them to come out of its poverty and start to develop  the economical, educational, and health aspects and start living even in comfort conditions. Just as in the case of Grameen Bank, Grameen-Carso expects that its main clients of micro credits will be women, as experience has demonstrated that borrower women are the most successful and reliable clients in this kind of social credit model.

Grameen- Carso endorses the commitment of Fundación Carlos Slim of expanding the advantages of micro credits in Mexico for people that has been excluded from the traditional banking system.

Professor Muhammad Yunus, founder of Grameen Bank and winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace along with Grameen Bank said that “it is evident that poverty is still a big problem in Mexico, as well as for many other countries around the world, and it is also evident that in the history of Grameen Bank it has been demonstrated that its micro credits represent a direct and successful way to reduce poverty. Through business initiatives of borrowers, as well as the financial education and training provided through loans following Grameen’s model, borrowers built economic foundations for themselves and their families, while they improve education, health and general interests of their families. Grameen Bank has shown that micro credit programs can be an economic success without charging exorbitant interest rates. I am very excited because of the opportunity to bring to Mexico the model of Grameen’s micro credits to large scale, and I am very grateful to Mr. Slim and its Foundation to provide the necessary resources to make Grameen-Carso a reality. We welcome the ideas and recommendations for improving the quality of life of the people of low resources in Mexico and other places”.

Grameen Trust (GT) is a subsidiary of Grameen Bank in Bangladesh. It was founded in 1989 as a non-governmental and non-profitable organization by Professor Muhammad Yunus. Mr. Yunus and Grameen Bank jointly received the Nobel Prize for Peace in 2006 for its work against poverty around the world. The purpose of Grameen Trust is to support and manage micro credit projects around the world, using the model of Grameen’s loans to alleviate poverty. To date, Grameen Trust has supported 141 micro credit projects in 38 countries. At this time, nine of these projects are denominated Build, Opera and Manage (BOM), which runs directly the Grameen Trust, for its rapid implementation. Grameen-Carso will be a BOM project.

Fundación Carlos Slim was founded in 1986 by Eng. Carlos Slim Helu and its main objective is to deal with and reduce poverty, through the application and development of high impact programs aimed at the attention of specific areas such as nutrition, health, education and the creation of more and better job opportunities within the Mexican society. In addition, the Foundación Carlos Slim is also focused on the promotion and support for sporting activities, justice, care of the environment, cultural activities; just like Museum-Soumaya, among others.

As an example of the programs developed by the Foundación Carlos Slim, in the areas of education and health we can point out: pregnancy care, perinatal and early stimulation programs (" Amanece "); medical research; interactive medicine; healthy households; social franchise" Casalud "; donation of lenses for students (" Ver para Aprender"); Ayudame a llegar, Operacion Sonrisa, digital grants for students in undergraduate and postgraduate; organ transplantation (" FUNAT”); progress of Educational programs,  as well as other programs such as Cultura Digital Telmex and Fundación Carlos Slim, through interactive quarters for literacy with classrooms and digital libraries; the human growth and development (“ASUME”); social work and promoting sports (Copa TELMEX Championship, TELMEX Basketball League and TELMEX Ring ), among other.

Fundación Carlos Slim supports employment in Mexico through the financing to SMEs, as well as through a continuous and intensive investment in the workforce. In coordination with other institutions that have similar objectives and targets, such as Wings, Clinton Global Initiative, Worldwide Fund, among others. Carlos Slim Foundation promotes the study for the development of the capitalization of enterprises (weight by weight), the preservation of biodiversity, and the maintenance and care of protected areas, as well as global warming.


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