Private Sector Development Unit (PSDU)

The Private Sector Development Unit (PSDU) of the Caribbean Development Bank was established with the objective of broadening the scope of development assistance to its BMC’s. It is recognised that the private sector has an important role in stimulating economic growth and development, particularly its contribution to combating poverty and in facilitating employment generation in the region.

In order to fulfill its mandate, the unit has adopted the Bank’s strategic priorities for supporting the private sector which involve:

  • An integrated approach to micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) development, by, inter alia, supporting financial institutions that provide assistance to MSMEs and assisting in the development of appropriate regulatory frameworks,
  • Improving the enabling environment and investment climate, and
  • Supporting of private participation in infrastructure development.

PSDU is therefore committed to supporting initiatives aimed at improvements in the global competitiveness of the region’s productive sectors on a sustainable basis. Particular emphasis is placed on building enterprise and institutional capacity and increasing the flow of investments capital to business enterprises.


CDB provides financial assistance to private enterprises and financial intermediaries, as well as to public sector financial intermediaries which satisfy CDB’s specific investment criteria.

Private Enterprises

CDB will contribute to the financial of private sector projects related directly to economic development in its BMCs. As a regional multilateral development bank, CDB is also prepared to finance investments in BMCs where risk perceptions constrain other financial and direct investors. However, CDB will not invest in projects and/or programmes where overall economic conditions and the financial and legal environment are such that the investment is unlikely to succeed. CDB’s interventions are expected to bring additional medium and long-term funds flowing to the private sector in the region, which means that CDB’s funds must not displace private capital, nor substitute for funds that would otherwise be available on appropriate terms and conditions.

Assistance may be considered for projects to establish, expand, diversify and modernize productive facilities in various sectors including energy, manufacturing, agribusiness, tourism, transportation, infrastructure, telecommunications and financial services.

CDB will give due consideration for investment to projects which are deemed to be beneficial to the economy of the BMCs. Priority is given to those activities which will enhance the region’s foreign exchange earning capabilities, generate employment, and those which promote poverty reduction, social equity and environmental protection. Typically CDB will not directly finance projects where its intervention would be less than US$3 million. CDB provides credit lines to financial intermediaries for smaller projects.

Public Sector Financing

In its private sector operations, CDB will normally invest in enterprises that are owned and managed by the private sector. Public ownership, however, will not, in itself, disqualify an enterprise from consideration for CDB investment, especially when CDB’s involvement serves to foster private sector development. However in all cases of government ownership, the enterprise must be managed in a way that responds to market signals, enjoys operational autonomy from the government and is subject to the country’s commercial and corporate legislation.

Financial Intermediaries

Financing programmes/projects with financial intermediaries are determined in accordance with prevailing strategies and financial policies which guide CDB’s interventions in institutions that assist the private sector. CDB will be guided by its requirements of sound management, acceptable asset quality, prudent financial and operational policies and adequate capital structure.

CDB seeks to lend to growing, innovative and well managed financial intermediaries that can contribute to financial market development and through CDB’s participation provide a wider range of services, particularly for MSME clients. Further CDB generally seeks to ensure that the resources provided are for a particular purpose such as lending to SME’s or other priority areas such as student loans and low income housing. CDB is open to working with a wide range of financial institutions to achieve its objectives and development mandate.

Capacity Building

The Private Sector Development Unit of the Caribbean Development Bank’s Capacity Building Programmes provides the following types of financing:

  • Micro Enterprise Financing
  • Small Enterprise Financing
  • Medium Enterprise Financing