Lessons Learned in Rural Finance: The Experience of the Inter-American Development Bank

Oct 2002
This paper reviews the Bank's lending experience in rural finance and extracts the lessons learned from that experience. It is based on a review of project documents, evaluation reports, and interviews. A sample of 27 projects were studied in detail. Although the review of IDB projects is far from exhaustive, it nevertheless serves to identify some important lessons for the design of future interventions. This paper will help policymakers, practitioners, academics, and consultants to better understand the history and types of interventions that the IDB has made in the past. The hope is that new operations will benefit from the lessons of the past and build on existing strengths. As we move into an era of increased market integration and globalization, the importance of well-functioning financial markets cannot be overemphasized. This paper shows how rural financing in Latin America and the Caribbean might be improved in the coming years.