Ex-Im Bank made creation of the Independent Advisory Panel on Development Issues in South Central Peru a condition of the bank’s approval of financial support for the Peru LNG Project.
In early 2008 the Bank approved a US$ 458.6 million long-term loan guarantee to support U.S. exports for this project, which is expected to become operational within the next few months.
“The development of south central Peru is driven largely by new energy projects including Peru LNG,” the bank said.
Members of the advisory panel, selected by Ex-Im Bank in 2009, are recognized, eminent experts in various aspects of environmental and social sciences.
The panel is chaired by Gonzalo Castro, former head of the biodiversity unit of the Global Environmental Fund and current chairman of Ecosystem Services, with offices in Lima and Washington, D.C.
The other members are Richard Chase Smith, an anthropologist and executive director of the non-governmental organization Instituto del Bien Comun, which focuses on land allocation and cultural diversity among Peruvian peoples
Glen Shepard, a research fellow and specialist in ethno-botany at the Museum of Archeology and Technology at the University of Belem in Brazil, who is fluent in several languages of indigenous peoples of the Amazon forest.
It also includes Patricia Majluf, a recognized marine biologist and director of the Sustainable Environment Center of Cayetano Herrida University in Lima; and Member Emeritus Dr. Richard Korswagen, who recently retired as director of Environmental Studies for the Universidad Catolica in Lima.
“We are especially impressed by the level of expertise and experience of the panel members,” said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg.
The panel says it intends to post its reports on the Internet, which will offer guidance to ongoing work at regional energy projects.
“We look forward to their findings on how the environmental and social aspects of the development of south central Peru are being managed,” Hochberg said.
More than 60 U.S. exporters and suppliers large and small will provide equipment and services for the Peru LNG Project, consisting of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant, related marine loading terminal, and dedicated natural gas pipeline to the plant.
Last month members of the new advisory panel were introduced to U.S. Ambassador to Peru Michael McKinley, to officials of the U.S. Agency for International Development, and to officials of Peru’s Ministry of Energy and Mines, Ministry of the Environment, and Organization for Supervising Investments in Energy and Mines.
All expressed enthusiasm about the panel’s upcoming work and offered to share information. The panel members also toured project sites.
The panel is engaging Cayetano Heredia University in Lima to serve as its Secretariat to coordinate activities and provide web site, e-mail and logistical services.
Ex-Im Bank, an independent, self-sustaining federal government agency, exists to fill gaps in export financing, to strengthen U.S. export competitiveness and to help create and maintain U.S. jobs.
In fiscal year 2009, Ex-Im Bank authorized $2.6 billion in financing to support U.S. exports to Latin America and the Caribbean, including $27.9 million for U.S. exports to Peru.