Cabinet Members, Global Business Leaders, and Celebrities Support Development in Latin America and the Caribbean through Annual Meeting of Inter-American Development Bank in Miami

Apr 01, 2008, 01:00 ET from Inter-American Development Bank

    MIAMI, April 1 /PRNewswire/ -- The 49th Annual Meeting of the Inter-
 American Development Bank (IDB), which will be held in Greater Miami April
 4- 8, will bring together high-level government officials, star CEOs and
 international celebrities, among them U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos
     "I am pleased to participate in an event that is bringing world-class
 business and government leaders together. With such close commercial and
 social ties to Latin America, Miami is the ideal venue for this meeting,"
 Gutierrez said. The Annual Meeting of the IDB is the premier forum on Latin
 American finance, trade, and economic development.
     Secretary Gutierrez will deliver a keynote address as part of a panel
 on competitiveness in the Americas, which will highlight the IDB's role in
 building member nations' capacity for maintaining and expanding economic
 activity in an environment of rapidly changing trade conditions.
     Others participating in the competitiveness panel include Jose Maria
 Alvarez-Pallete Lopez, president of Telefonica Latin America; Juan Cento,
 president of FedEx Express Latin America and Caribbean Division; Danilo
 Astori, Minister of Economy of Uruguay; Rui da Costa, Managing Director for
 Latin America and the Caribbean of Hewlett Packard; Manu Bhaskaran, a
 member of the Knowledge Panel at MasterCard; and Andres Velasco, Minister
 of Economy and Finance of Chile.
     According to Jorge L. Arrizurieta, Chairman of the IDB Miami 2008 Host
 Committee and former Alternate U.S. Executive Director of the IDB, the
 panel on competitiveness is one of many groundbreaking events scheduled for
 the Annual Meeting. Others include a seminar on private philanthropy, an
 event on youth as agents of change, a panel on infrastructure, and a
 seminar on confronting natural disasters.
     "This historic event will again allow Miami to unite the private and
 public sectors of Latin America and the Caribbean, further highlighting our
 role as a business center for the region," Arrizurieta said.
     A forum on the role of private philanthropy in development will feature
 a keynote address from Microsoft founder Bill Gates and remarks by IDB
 President Luis Alberto Moreno. Preceding these appearances, Alberto
 Ibarguen, President and CEO of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation,
 will moderate a panel of high-level executives including Emilio Azcarraga,
 Chairman of Televisa; Christina Gold, President and CEO of Western Union;
 and Bill Rhodes, Vice Chair Citi. Cesar Alierta, Chairman of Telefonica
 International, will make a presentation.
     "The IDB wants to become the region's preferred partner in private
 sector development, bringing additional benefits such as mobilization of
 private bank funds, improved corporate governance and compliance with
 environmental standards," said IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno. "We want
 to be closer to our customers and build strategic alliances with
 governments, privates sector companies and NGOs to bring the benefits of
 growth to the 70 percent of the population who earn less than $3000 a
     General Anthony Zinni, Vice President of DynCorp and former CENTCOM
 Commander, will speak on response and preparedness for natural disasters, a
 priority of the IDB and an important safeguard of human welfare in the
 region. Joining General Zinni on the panel will be Roberto Velluntini,
 Sector Manager, Infrastructure & Environment Dept. IDB; Omar Dario Cardona,
 a consultant for the IDB on natural disaster issues; Lorenza Martinez
 Trigueros, General Manager of insurance at the Mexican treasury (Secretaria
 de Hacienda y Credito Publico); Anne Hassberger, Deputy Head for
 International Financial Institutions, Federal Dept. of Foreign Affairs,
 Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperation (Moderator).
     "Latin America and the Caribbean are a very important partner," Zinni
 said. "I am excited to accept the Host Committee's invitation to share my
 views on how to prepare and mitigate natural disasters. This is of vital
 importance to the development and growth of the region and ultimately it
 impacts people the most."
     As part of the forum Celebrities and Youth as Agents of Change, the IDB
 and MTV Latin America will present the U.S. premier of their television
 program on youth as agents of change. The program celebrates youth whose
 leadership has made a difference in their community. As part of a
 roundtable discussion led by Generation Engage, a non-profit organization
 dedicated to increasing political awareness among young people, Secretary
 of the Treasury Henry Paulson will participate in an iChat dialogue with
 youth leaders. The President of MTV Latin America, Pierluigi Gazzolo, will
 speak about the impact of the program.
     A panel on opportunities and challenges for private investment in
 infrastructure in the Americas will bring together a number of
 distinguished private and public sector leaders, including Robert
 Mosbacher, President of the Overseas Investment Corporation; Manny Diaz,
 Mayor of the City of Miami; Felipe Montoro Jens, Head of Project and
 Structure Finance of Odebrecht; Alberto Aleman Zubieta, CEO, Panama Canal
 Authority; Carlos Contreras, Executive Managing Director, Caja Madrid;
 Javier Falces, General Manager, Global Via Infraestructuras; and John Gage,
 Chief Researcher and Director of the Science Office, Sun Microsystems;
 Sergio Cabral, Governor, State of Rio de Janeiro; Daniel Scioli, Governor,
 Buenos Aires; Norman Anderson, CEO, CG/LA Infrastructure; Lic. Federico
 Patino, Director of the Mexican National Infrastructure Fund.
Contact: Dorothy Kronick IDB Miami Host Committee Naomi Newton The Jeffrey Group

SOURCE Inter-American Development Bank