IFC Invests $10 Million in GeoPark Holdings Limited
Washington, February 8, 2006 — The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, signed an agreement to invest $10 million in equity in GeoPark Holdings Limited, an independent oil and gas producer with operations in Argentina and Chile.
IFC’s financial support will help the company in the early stage of development by strengthening its capital base and refining its corporate governance practices. IFC will also play an important role in helping GeoPark identify opportunities for community development near its operations in both countries. In addition, IFC will assist the company in establishing an integrated environmental, health, safety, and social management system, in line with both World Bank Group standards and international best practices.
IFC expects to follow-up the equity investment with a long-term loan to GeoPark of up to $20 million.
“We are delighted to partner with GeoPark in an investment that helps Argentina and Chile optimize their use of natural resources by developing much needed oil and gas reserves,” said Somit Varma, Associate Director of IFC’s Oil, Gas, Mining, and Chemicals Department. He added, “We are happy to work with a company that has sought to adopt international standards on corporate governance and environmental and social management practices. This partnership fits well with IFC’s strategy.”
“We are pleased to partner with IFC at this important stage in our development. IFC’s investment and vast international and industry experience will accelerate our internal growth, expand our acquisition opportunities, provide valuable guidance on community engagement and other best practices and differentiate GeoPark as a competitive regional player” said James F. Park, Chief Executive Officer of GeoPark. “We found the IFC investment process – from start to close – to be quick and responsive”, he added.
The International Finance Corporation is the private sector arm of the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C. IFC coordinates its activities with the other institutions of the World Bank Group but is legally and financially independent. Its 178 member countries provide its share capital and collectively determine its policies.
The mission of IFC is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing and transition countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. From its founding in 1956 through FY05, IFC has committed more than $49 billion of its own funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio as of FY05 was $19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held for participants in loan syndications. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
GeoPark currently operates three blocks in Argentina and one block in Chile. The Del Mosquito, Cerro Dona Juana and Loma Cortaderal blocks in Argentina are located in the Neuquen and Austral basins, respectively, and are fully owned by the Company, while the Fell block in Chile is located in the Magallanes region and is 90 percent owned by GeoPark, with the remaining interest held by Empresa Nacional de Petróleo, the Chilean state-owned oil and gas company. For more information, visit: www.geo-park.com.
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