We have all heard of the Export / Import Bank (EXIM). We have heard of vague references to trade manipulation, balance of payments, debtor nations, World Bank, World Trade Organization (WTO), violent protests around the world, including Seattle (who were those people?), etc. Few have heard of OPIC. Overseas Private Investment Corporation is a department of the United States Treasury. Immediately you may wonder why “Private” and United States are associated in the same sentence. I was curious. It’s exactly what you think. Our tax dollars are going to multi-national companies to finance and indemnify their operations in foreign countries. Hundreds of billions of dollars are going to Boeing, General Electric, ENRON, Shell, Exxon, BP, Microsoft, ..... to finance and insure the exportation of American jobs to other nations. http://www.opic.gov/ 1999
Overseas Private Investment Corporation An Agency of the United States Government OPIC Supports Gas Field Development in Algeria In support of the regional initiative, the OPIC Board of Directors approved up to $200 million in political risk insurance in June 1999 to cover the Sonatrach-BHP Ohanet Gas Processing Venture in Algeria. The project is the construction, development, production, and operation of the Ohanet gas fields in the southern desert of Algeria. This project is sponsored, in part, by Petrofac Resources International Inc., a small business headquartered in Tyler Texas. This environmentally sound project is expected to yield numerous benefits, including increasing net annual export earnings, generating local procurement, creating local jobs, and increasing gas production capacity. OPIC Supports Innovative Energy Project in Morocco Along with the U.S. Export-Import Bank, another OPIC-supported project that is helping economic development in North Africa is the Jorf Lasfar Energy Company project in Morocco. Sponsored by CMS Generation Company of Michigan and supported by OPIC commitments of $200 million in insurance and $200 million in financing, the Jorf Lasfar project is providing Morocco with a large source of power generation and with a revenue generator. Not only will this facility provide tax revenue, generate local procurement, and create new jobs, Jorf Lasfar is expected to use $644 million in U.S. goods and services and create 1,695 American jobs.
OPIC is a self-sustaining federal agency that sells investment services to small, medium and large American businesses expanding into some 140 developing nations and emerging markets around the world. OPIC’s political risk insurance, project finance and investment funds fill a commercial void, create a level playing field for U.S. businesses and support development in emerging economies. Since 1971, OPIC has supported nearly $130 billion worth of investments that will generate over $61 billion in U.S. exports and create or support more than 242,000 American jobs.
“Self-sustained” by our treasury and military.
The board first approved a $106 million loan guaranty to Lima Airport Partners for the privatization and rehabilitation of the Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima, Peru. Through an indirect shareholding interest, Bechtel Enterprises of San Francisco is partnering with Peruvian, German and Singaporean companies to undertake the privatization. Next, the board approved a $190 million loan guaranty to Sociedade Fluminense de Energia, for a project sponsored by Enron Corporation of Houston for the construction and operation of a 379-megawatt gas-fired power plant near Rio de Janeiro.
Do you see where this is going?
WASHINGTON. D.C. - In a joint trade and finance initiative to support U.S. exports to Indonesia, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank), Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (TDA) will provide up to $400 million in loans and guarantees to finance U.S. exports. The three U.S. trade agencies will provide financing to promote trade and investment opportunities in Indonesia. Ex-Im Bank will provide financing to support U.S. exports of goods and services in the oil and gas sector. OPIC will provide loans, guarantees and insurance for projects in the oil and gas sector, and TDA funds will be used to identify and develop projects in various industry sectors for Ex-Im Bank and OPIC loans and guarantees.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) will establish a $200 million support facility to promote U.S. investment in sub-Saharan Africa, one in a series of Administration initiatives to augment U.S.-African trade following passage of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) last year. President George W. Bush, announcing the facility at an AGOA forum at the State Department, told the gathering of African leaders, members of his cabinet and the U.S. Congress, "I am pleased to announce the creation of a $200 million Overseas Private Investment Corporation support facility that will give American firms access to loans, guarantees and political risk insurance for investment projects in sub-Saharan Africa."
Over the agency’s 30-year history, OPIC has supported $142 billion worth of investments that have helped developing countries to generate over $11 billion in host-government revenues and create over 673,000 host-country jobs. OPIC projects have also generated $64 billion in U.S. exports and create more than 253,000 American jobs.
In 2001, OPIC supported only $130 billion in investments. So, they put out $12 billion in 2002 - not reflected in their press releases.
Foreign Policy Objectives In fulfillment of this commitment to Indonesia, OPIC recently approved support of up to $350 million in financing for two offshore oil and natural gas projects in Indonesia. The projects, which will yield an estimated 145 million barrels of oil, are sponsored by California-based Unocal Corporation. The projects demonstrate U.S. investor confidence in the stability of Indonesia and its reform efforts. The projects will generate approximately $200 million in procurement in Indonesia, as well as roughly $66 million in procurement in the United States. In October 2001, OPIC announced a $300 million line of credit, available to U.S. companies contemplating investments in Pakistan. A February visit by a joint U.S. Government delegation made up of representatives from OPIC, Export-Import Bank and TDA returned from a successful mission to Pakistan to promote private investment and trade opportunities. OPIC is presently considering projects in the oil and gas sector, power generation and financial services that will help fulfill a commitment to boost private sector economic development in Pakistan. As part of the U.S. commitment to the economic reconstruction of post-Taliban Afghanistan, OPIC co-hosted the first high-level discussion of U.S. private sector involvement in Afghanistan, assembling more than 40 Afghan-American business leaders and senior U.S. officials to outline investment opportunities in the war-torn country. This preceded the establishment an initial $50 million line of credit to support U.S. investment in that country. Post-Taliban Afghanistan will require not only humanitarian assistance, but private capital flows as it rebuilds its economy and economic institutions. Economic growth generated by investment stands to be the most sustainable and diffuse - two outcomes certainly we all support.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The board of directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) approved up to $250 million in OPIC political risk insurance for the drilling and repair of oil and gas wells in southwestern Chad - OPIC’s first project in the African country, one of the world’s least-developed economically. Pride International, Inc., headquartered in Houston, sought political risk insurance coverage for its contract to provide oil field drilling services to Esso Exploration and Production Chad, Inc. Pride is deploying five mobile rigs in Chad’s southwestern Doba Oil Basin, comprising the Miandoum, Bolobo and Komé oil fields.
These poor oil companies need loans from the US Treasury because no private bank will fund risky wildcatting.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Friday, May 24, 2002 OPIC TO SUPPORT $100 MILLION RUSSIA-RELATED INVESTMENT FUND President Bush makes announcement in Moscow http://virtual.opic.gov/RussiaEquityFund/call.nsf WASHINGTON, D.C. -- As President Bush announced today, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) intends to support a $100 million private equity fund to stimulate investment in Russia and surrounding regions. The president announced formation of the fund in Moscow, during his four-day trip to Russia.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have some of this investment in Detroit, Gary, Indianapolis, Pittsburg,....?
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 13, 2002 OPIC BOARD APPROVES $150 MILLION LENDING FACILITY FOR RUSSIA AND CENTRAL ASIA WASHINGTON, D.C. - The board of directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) approved a $150 million OPIC guaranty to support Citibank’s U.S. dollar and local currency projects in Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. The facility is the third between OPIC and Citibank to be approved by the board this year. [This must be around those Caspian oil and gas fields.] The guaranty is designed to help Citibank expand availability of credit in the region. Citibank and OPIC will share the risk for individual loans originated under this facility, each of which will be cleared by OPIC for U.S. effects, environmental, human and workers’ rights. In May, OPIC’s board approved $200 million loan guaranty to Citibank to establish a lending facility for Latin America, with initial focus on Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. The board also approved a $100 million loan guaranty to Citibank to create a lending facility for Pakistan.
Citibank is the national bank of Argentina. What the f**k?
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) has committed to provide a $30 million loan to Russia’s leading micro- and small finance bank, Small Business Credit Bank (KMB Bank), enabling KMB Bank to make small loans to micro, small and medium-sized customers investing in Russia, OPIC President and CEO Dr. Peter Watson announced today.
Would you lend money to a Russian bank? You did!
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Fulfilling a commitment made by President Bush in May, the board of directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) has approved a $210 million investment fund for Russia intended to support fast-growing businesses in consumer services industries. OPIC will provide a $70 million investment guaranty to the fund, Russia Partners II, L.P., to be managed by New York and Moscow-based Russia Partners Management. .... The fund will focus primarily on Russia, but will also be available for investments in the Eurasian countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
These guys ring the Caspian Sea, don’t they?
OPIC IN THE OIL & GAS SECTOR June 2002 OPIC is currently providing approximately $695 million in financing to seven oil and gas projects in Argentina, Papua New Guinea, Russia and Venezuela. Historically, OPIC has supported 143 oil and gas sector projects in various countries with approximately $6.9 billion in political risk insurance exposure. OPIC has historically provided more than $1.6 billion in financing to 26 oil and gas sector projects in regions including Latin America, Africa, Asia, the New Independent States and the Middle East. OPIC Provides Tailored Insurance Products for Oil and Gas Projects OPIC offers a special insurance contract for oil and gas exploration and production ("E&P") projects specifically tailored to cover production sharing agreements as well as other forms of agreements such as concession agreements or tax/royalty agreements. OPIC can provide coverage for all phases of an E&P project, from seismic data acquisition and analysis, through exploration, development and production and can protect against the following risks that are particularly relevant for E&P projects: * Total Expropriation, Including Total or Creeping Expropriation. Action by the host country government that amounts to a breach of international law or an abrogation, repudiation, impairment or breach of the project agreement, including material changes to the fiscal terms unilaterally imposed by the host country government. Action by the host country government which effectively denies the investor of the fundamental rights in the project, including preventing the investor or the operator from controlling or operating the project, receiving payments from the project, or selling their interest in the project. * Partial Expropriation or Confiscation of Tangible Assets. Action by the host country government that amounts to a confiscation or expropriation assets, including "covered property" used or produced in connection with the project (such as drilling rigs, oil field equipment, produced petroleum or oil wells). * Losses of Tangible Assets due to Political Violence. Losses of covered property due to politically motivated acts, including declared or undeclared war, hostile action by national or international forces, civil war, revolution, insurrection, civil strife, terrorism or sabotage. * Interference with Operations due to Political Violence. Forced abandonment of the project if it becomes impossible or unreasonably hazardous to carry on the operation of the project due to political violence. * Sale of Production in Country for "National Emergency". Many project agreements require sales of production in the host country in the event of a "national emergency" and assume there will be sufficient hard currency available under such circumstances. OPIC provides coverage against the risk that the project is unable to convert and transfer local currency. * Revoked Rights to Hard Currency Accounts. Many project agreements provide for the right to receive and maintain hard currency proceeds from the sale of production in offshore accounts. OPIC provides coverage against the risk that such rights are rescinded and subsequently the project is unable to convert and transfer local currency. OPIC's Increases Limits for Oil and Gas Sector Projects OPIC has increased the amount of support OPIC may offer. OPIC may now offer up to $250 million of either political risk insurance or financing. The previous limit was $200 million for insurance or financing each. OPIC has also increased the amount of support it may offer to projects in the oil and gas sector. OPIC may now offer up to $300 million of either insurance or financing to oil and gas projects with offshore, hard-currency revenues, and up to $400 million if the project receives a credit evaluation of investment grade or higher from major ratings agencies. Nevertheless, the maximum support OPIC may offer an individual project is $400 million, either insurance or financing or any combination of both. OPIC Insures Wide Variety of Oil and Gas Projects OPIC political risk insurance has supported numerous oil and gas industry projects, including the following: Russia. OPIC insured Anderman/Smith Overseas' equity investment in a joint venture that was created to develop and upgrade the Chernogorskoye oilfield in Western Siberia. Kazakhstan. Oil and gas projects create a wide variety of supply and support opportunities for U.S. firms. OPIC insured M-I Drilling Fluids Company of Houston, Texas for its equity investment in a project that built and operated a barite grinding mill in Kazakhstan. The mine produced drilling fluids for local oil producers. Argentina. New OPIC products can provide liquidity for oil and gas projects in the emerging markets. OPIC's political risk insurance utilized its product for capital markets transactions to provide coverage for a $175 million bond issuance in the U.S. capital markets by the Argentine natural gas transportation company Transportadora de Gas del Norte. With OPIC's political risk insurance, the transaction received an investment grade rating from Fitch IBCA and Standard & Poors. Algeria. OPIC provided political risk insurance to cover the Sonatrach-BHP Ohanet Gas Processing Venture in Algeria. The project is the construction, development, production, and operation of the Ohanet gas fields in the southern desert of Algeria. This project is sponsored, in part, by Petrofac Resources International Inc., a small business headquartered in Tyler, Texas. Brazil. OPIC has committed to provide political risk insurance for potential U.S. investments in the Pescada-Arabaiana oil field in Brazil that has oil reserves of 23 million barrels as well as gas reserves. Speaking at the U.S. Caspian Finance Seminar held June 4, 2002, in Baku, Azerbaijan, Ross J. Connelly, OPIC Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, announced that OPIC would consider providing up to $300 million in political risk insurance support for U.S. equity investors or U.S. financial institutions participating in the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan main oil export pipeline.
Sustainable Energy & Economy Network Institute for Policy Studies March 22, 2002
Guess who paid for this disaster? You did! No press on this fraud. 2003
http://www.opic.gov/OPICNews/0503/opicnews0503.pdf Published by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation An Agency of the United States Government Three zeroes separate the amount of support OPIC is providing two projects in Afghanistan -- $35,000 in political risk insurance to help build schools in Kabul, $35,000,000 for the construction of an international hotel in the same city... The Hyatt Regency Kabul will be located in the heart of Kabul's business district and will offer a full range of meeting facilities, as well as a business center and restaurant.
Hyatt needs a $35 million loan from US taxpayers to build a resort for oil and gas pipeline executives in Kabul, Afghanistan. Is this how you want tax dollars spent? Our military must ensure the security of this hotel. When the Taliban takes it down, we pay the bill. This is plundering of the US Treasury for private enterprise.
In a unique project facilitating U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) efforts to reduce nuclear proliferation, a U.S. small business will use political risk insurance from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) to employ former Russian nuclear scientists to manufacture medical equipment such as prosthetics and state-of-the-art burn treatments. The scientists will be drawn from a Russian company, Spektr, [is this the former SPecial Executive for Kounter-Terrorism and Revenge?] which is staffed with employees of the Russian Federation's All Russian Scientific and Research Institute for Technical Physics (VNIITF) who previously worked as scientists, engineers and technicians manufacturing and designing weapons. OPIC will provide $25 million in insurance to Numotech, Inc. of Northridge, CA, for a joint venture to be located in Snezhinsk, Russia, that will manufacture the equipment, initially for Numotech and eventually for other companies.
http://www.opic.gov/OPICNews/0504/opicnews0504.pdf OPIC is providing $250 million in insurance for the drilling and repair of oils and gas wells in Chad -- the agency’s first project in that country.
http://www.pacificenvironment.org/stopexxonmobil/documents/factsheet-eco... One of Africa's last untouched rainforests are threatened by ExxonMobil's Chad Cameroon pipeline, which is financed by US taxpayer dollars via the World Bank. The company wants to build a pipeline from oil fields in Chad through the central African rainforest to Cameroon. The proposed Chad- Cameroon pipeline would stretch 650 miles along the banks of the Sanga River. The pipeline would start in Chad, where the company proposes to drill up to 300 oil wells.
http://www.planetark.org/dailynewsstory.cfm/newsid/17817/story.htm UK: September 19, 2002 LONDON - Supermajor ExxonMobil Corp has put to work all five oil rigs earmarked for drilling in the environmentally sensitive Chad project in West Africa, a company spokeswoman said. "A total of 12 wells had been drilled by the end of the second quarter 2002, five of them production wells," Marcia Zelinsky said in a written reply to Reuters' inquiries. Project operator ExxonMobil plans to drill 300 wells over the course of the estimated 25-30 years of the field's life. The World Bank-backed $4 billion project, which has come under renewed environmental protest mostly surrounding the 1,070 kilometres pipeline from landlocked Chad to the Cameroonian coast, is slated to come onstream at the end of 2003 with peak output of 225,000 barrels per day.
Exxon/Mobil needs all the financial help we can afford to give them.
http://www.opic.gov/OPICNews/0506/opicnews0506.pdf OPIC News June 2003 Vol. 5 No. 6 Published by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation An Agency of the United States Government OPIC agreement marks start of hotel project in Afghanistan – a 205-room hotel in Kabul Hyatt Regency, Kabul. OPIC will provide $40 million in support to the hotel project, comprising $24.5 million in financing and $15.5 million in political risk insurance. The project represents significant progress toward fulfilling President Bush's 2002 announcement that OPIC would establish a $50 million line of credit for U.S. private sector investment in Afghanistan. In March, OPIC President and CEO Dr. Peter Watson increased the amount to a minimum of $100 million. http://www.opic.gov/opicnews/0508/opicnews0508.pdf OPIC News August 2003 Overseas Private Investment Corporation An Agency of the United States Government OPIC board OKs financing for Russian oil project OPIC's board of directors approved $130 million in OPIC financing for the construction of an oil products export terminal in Russia, enabling that country to expand its export capacity in a cost-effective manner. OPIC will provide the loan guaranty to HBK Fund LP, a Delaware limited partnership based in Dallas, Texas, for a loan the fund will make to an indirect subsidiary of OAO LUKOIL, Russia's leading oil producer. In its capacity as financial consultant to OAO LUKOIL, Fluor Corporation has assisted in structuring and arranging the OPICbased financing. The project consists of the construction and operation of a crude oil and petroleum products export terminal on the western coast of Vysotsky Island on the Gulf of Finland, north of St. Petersburg. OPIC financing will specifically cover the first two phases of the project, including construction of rail links and upgrades, two tank farms and a marine jetty, as well as dredging in the Gulf of Finland to allow for the passage of crude and product tankers.
There are $billions more being doled out to the world’s richest corporations and executives from the US Treasury through the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), Export-Import Bank, World Bank, and the World Trade Organization money laundries. Boeing, GE, auto manufacturers, and technology firms are being financed by the US government to shut down their operations in the US, lay off tens of thousands of American workers, and build new empires overseas.
OPIC is a net US Treasury contributor -- even though it has funds appropriated to it, it is a profitable organization which gives back to the Treasury more than it takes out. It really is financially "self-sustained."
And I haven't seen any evidence of military support for projects in your quotes above...
And why doesn't OPIC support projects in the U.S.? Because it is not mandated to do so. There are other agencies which have this jurisdiction -- SBA rings a bell... heard of it?
There may be ethically dodgy issues at hand, but you have failed to rationally point them out. I support criticising government agencies but, please, when you make arguments, try to make sure that they are logically sound.
Maybe you can explain how this largess is helping the people of the United States who bankroll this hemorrhage.
Globalization is a LIE!
Globalization is a LIE!
I'm surprised but I can't say shocked
by this. I can't believe that this story hasn't received some coverage from the media.
To the best of my knowledge, not even Lou Dobbs has reported on this.