Costa Rica eyes raising $2.7 billion via sale of state financial assets

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Ninth Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles

SAN JOSE (Reuters) – Costa Rica’s President Rodrigo Chaves said on Tuesday he plans to present a bill to sell state-owned banks Banco de Costa Rica and Banco Internacional de Costa Rica, as well as 49% of the state-owned INS insurance company to reduce public debt.

If approved, the sale of the banks is expected to raise $1.8 billion, equivalent to some 2.8% of Costa Rica’s gross domestic product, while the stake in the insurance company should fetch around $890 million, Chaves said in a speech marking his first 100 days in office.

“Soon we’ll present the bill to Congress, they’re ready for it and I’m looking over (it),” Chaves said.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) approved a $290 million credit line for Costa Rica to be used for the country’s fiscal consolidation and a “low-emission economic recovery,” the development bank said.

(Reporting by Alvaro Murillo; Writing by Anthony Esposito; Editing by Christian Schmollinger and Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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