Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency

Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), specialized agency of the United Nations. Formed in 1988, with headquarters in Washington, D.C., it is a member of the World Bank Group (see International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) and membership in the MIGA is open to all World Bank members. The agency, which has 176 member nations, encourages foreign investment in developing countries by providing political-risk insurance, protecting investors against losses resulting from such noncommercial risks as transfer restriction, expropriation, breach of contract, and war and civil disturbance. In addition, the agency provides information on investment opportunities and technical assistance to investors and member states; it also mediates investment disputes and administers claims. MIGA specializes in facilitating investments in high-risk, low-income countries and supports projects that are socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable. In 2005 MIGA launched its Small Investment Program, which encourages the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises by offering investors in these enterprises a standardized package of risk coverage. As of 2009, MIGA had issued more than 900 guarantees, providing more than $17.4 billion in coverage for projects in 96 developing countries.

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