IDB Invest, FinDev Canada, BNCR to Issue Costa Rica’s First Social Bond

  • The social bond will increase MSME’s access to credit.


IDB Invest has structured a subordinated social bond worth $75 million, to be issued by the National Bank of Costa Rica (BNCR), in a deal that will strengthen BNCR's capital structure and allow greater access to financing for the country’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

The bond will be issued in two series, with a $45 million subscription by IDB Invest and the rest taken by FinDev Canada, and at least 40% of the funds raised will be used to finance the women MSMEs segment. This is the first social bond issuance in Costa Rica and the first social bond issued by BNCR.

As part of the process, IDB Invest advised BNCR on the design of the methodological framework for the use of funds, which contains the criteria for the selection, monitoring and evaluation of projects, aligned with the Association's Social Bond Principles International Capital Markets (ICMA). BNCR obtained an independent verification of the methodological framework, known as a second-party opinion, issued by Vigeo Eiris (V.E), an external consultant specializing in this type of project.

FinDev Canada worked with BNCR in the development of a strategic gender plan and carried out a diagnosis of gender gaps with the support of the Women's Empowerment Principles (WEP) tool. This strategic plan will allow the strengthening and expansion of BNCR's offer of financial products aimed at women.

This social bond ratifies IDB Invest's commitment to strengthen and support access to financing for MSMEs in Costa Rica, as well as to guarantee access and financial opportunities to Costa Rican women. Likewise, this issue will contribute to the development of the capital market and thematic bonds in the region, especially in Central America.

This deal is expected to contribute to five United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): No Poverty (SDG 1), Gender Equality (SDG 5), Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8), Industry, innovation and infrastructure (SDG 9) and Reduction of inequalities (SDG 10).



About IDB Invest


IDB Invest is a multilateral development bank committed to promoting the economic development of its member countries in Latin America and the Caribbean through the private sector. IDB Invest finances sustainable companies and projects to achieve financial results and maximize economic, social, and environmental development in the region. With a portfolio of $14.8 billion in asset management and 376 clients in 25 countries, IDB Invest provides innovative financial solutions and advisory services that meet the needs of its clients in a variety of industries.


About BNCR


BNCR is the largest commercial bank in Costa Rica. It was founded in 1914 and is owned by the State of Costa Rica. It has 170 offices throughout the country, more than 400 ATMs, more than 1,200 businesses affiliated with BN Servicios and more than 6,000 employees. BNCR has, in addition to the banking business, a presence in the insurance business, investment fund management, brokerage and pension management. BNCR has a robust franchise that has benefited from sovereign support, reflected in depositors' confidence that their deposits are guaranteed by the Costa Rican government.


About FinDev Canada


FinDev Canada is a development finance institution dedicated to providing financial services to the private sector in developing countries with the aim of fighting poverty through economic growth with an emphasis on the following areas: economic development through creation employment, women's economic empowerment, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. FinDev Canada is a subsidiary of Export Development Canada (EDC). More information about FinDev Canada is available at