March 18, 2019

The United States and Brazilian government on Monday signed a deal to work together in the near future to establish a biodiversity-driven impact investment fund to support Brazilian Amazon.

The deal was signed by United States Agency for International Development Administrator Mark Green and the Brazilian Secretary of the Office of International Relations within the Ministry of the Environment, Roberto Castelo Branco during Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s official visit to U.S.

The fund, a $100 million bilateral nations private sector-led impact investments, aims to close crucial financing voids left by traditional investment vehicles by providing startups, entrepreneurs with access to capital, loans and other necessary investments that will help create innovative, financially viable, and scalable businesses that is critical to developing economic opportunities for local communities as well as strengthen startups, entrepreneurship, spur innovation, and sustainable value-chains in the Amazon region.

The fund is expected to invest in hard-to-reach, high-risk sectors to spur profits in social enterprise businesses that align with forest and biodiversity conservation.

The new deal will also build upon the two countries’ decades of collaborative efforts on biodiversity work to protect the Amazon ecosystem while also advancing prosperity through responsible economic development. As the region develops, long-term conservation depends on innovative and sustainable partnerships.

The Amazon’s basin holds the largest collection of plant and animal species on Earth, with 60 percent of its basin located in Brazil.

The region, which is nearly the size of the continental U.S. and spans nine countries across South America, also produces 20 percent of the world’s oxygen and fresh water, which the U.S. government believes is essential to biodiversity healthy Amazon forests are critical to Brazil, the United States, and the world.