“In Colombia, the IFC desired to undertake an evaluation of its investment in Muelles el Bosque (MEB). MEB, located in the city of Cartagena, was the first privately-owned maritime terminal and is the only terminal that provides specialized services for grains, in addition to services for containers, general cargo, project cargo, vehicles, and bulk minerals.

The IFC retained Nathan Associates Inc. to analyze the economic impact associated with an investment made by the corporation to partially finance the expansion of the terminal in 2007. The $36.5 million expansion project included investments in: (i) the extension of the south container terminal berth by 180 meters; (ii) the expansion of the container yard by 3.2 hectares (via landfill); (iii) the paving of all operational areas of the terminal; (iv) the acquisition of two additional mobile cranes and other container yard equipment; (v) the extension of the north berth by 50 meters; (vi) the building of two additional vertical silos; (vii) the purchase of land for future expansion of the Port, and (viii) the upgrade of the port’s IT systems.

The overarching goal of the evaluation was to identify the extent in which the project has on development impact, and the extent to which IFC’s engagement likely enhanced that impact. Furthermore, the evaluation sought to highlight lessons learned in regards to investment and advisory services. Nathan assessed the operational characteristics of the terminal before and after the investment to determine the performance improvements of the terminal, and to evaluate if expected financial, economic, environmental, social, and private sector development outcomes were achieved. This evaluation was conducted at the local, regional, and national level.”

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