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Financing Instruments

The Sistema de Banca para el Desarrollo (SBD or Development Bank System) is complementary to the Financial System. It possesses resources of different kinds and the legal authorizations necessary to significantly meet the demand for financing of micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).


Development Credit Fund (CDF)

A significant source of the Development Bank System’s resources originated in the breakup of the State banking monopoly, which required private banks in Costa Rica to allocate a percentage of short-term deposits to grant loans to MSMEs with conditions that promote and facilitate their growth and development.

Article 59(i) of the National Banking System Organic Law  instructs private banks to permanently maintain a loan balance in the Credit Fund for Development equal to seventeen percent (17%) of their total 30-day or less term deposits, in both national and foreign currency, after deducting the corresponding reserve.

If all deposits are made in national currency, then a balance of only fifteen percent (15%) needs to be maintained.

Financial Intermediation:

This is the list of the different programs offered by our accredited Financial Operators.

The Credit Fund for Development is administered equally by the State banks.

Resources established in subsection ii of article 59 of Law No. 1644:

Alternatively, section ii) requires private banks to have a minimum of four agencies or branches dedicated to basic banking services, including both lending and borrowing, distributed in the Chorotega, Pacífico Central, Brunca, Huetar Atlántico y Huetar Norte regions, as well as to maintain a balance equal to at least ten percent (10%), after deducting the corresponding reserve, of its total 30-day or less term deposits, in both local and foreign currency, in loans targeted at programs that must be submitted to the Board of Directors for review and approval.

Programs by Financial Operators

Learn about all the current programs

Programs by Financial Operators

For resources in colones:

At the passive interest rate calculated by Costa Rica’s Central Bank, to be adjusted and reviewed quarterly. This rate will be set at four percent (4%) whenever the calculation results in a lesser percentage.

For recourses in foreign currency:

At the private bank’s average net interest rate of six-month term deposits calculated by Costa Rica’s Central Bank, to be adjusted and reviewed quarterly. This rate will be set at three percent (3%) whenever the calculation results in a lesser percentage.

If private banks channel resources through a second-tier bank, the Board of Directors will set a preferential rate.



National Development Fund

Each public bank, except for Home Mortgage Bank (BANHVI), must create a Financing Fund for Development to which it must allocate annually at least five percent (5%) of its net profits after income tax, to finance SBD beneficiaries who submit viable, productive projects. This financing will be awarded based on each project’s requirements.

Tasas de interés vigentes para los beneficiarios


Tipo programa

Tasa colones activa referencIa para el BENEFICIARIO FINAL

Tasa dólares activa referencia para BENEFICIARIO FINAL

Comisión única hasta...



TD más margen hasta: 6% interm.financieros y 10% microfinanc





TBP-BCCR hasta: 6% interm.financieros y 10% microfinanc





TBP-BCCR, piso 4%

50% TBP hasta 6% intermediarios y 10% microfinanc

TCD-6M, piso 3%

 50% TCD hasta 5% interm.


Inciso ii


TBP-BCCR, piso 4%

50% TBP hasta 6% intermediarios y 10% microfinanc

TCD-6M, piso 3%  

50% TCD hasta 5% interm


TBP: tasa básica pasiva  TCD: tasa promedio de captación dólares 6 meses   TD: tasa de desarrollo

How can you request a loan from Development Bank resources?

  1. First, go to a financial operator close to your geographic location with a program that covers your productive project.
  2. The financial operator will determine whether your project is viable. If yes, then it will process your loan request.
  3. If you need training or advice, the Development Bank works with collaborators and institutions that offer nonfinancial services, such as the National Learning Institute (INA).

Regarding the financial purposes and indebtedness of FONADE, in addition to best practices on the subject, the following policies apply:

To fulfill the purposes as established, the Board of Directors, through the Technical Secretariat, is authorized to autonomously negotiate, contract, and execute medium- and long-term internal and external debt up to a maximum level of indebtedness equal to 5.5 times FONADE’s assets.

For this, the Board of Directors will pre-approve the following conditions:

  • An evaluation prior to contracting the debt of FONADE’s repayment capacity based on its historical performance of recoveries. Whenever the consolidated delinquency of FONADE’s Credit Fund exceeds five percent (5%), it may not negotiate or contract new debt.
  • A comprehensive risk management evaluation associated with the Fund and the definition of appropriate mitigation measures.
  • A technical justification of the anticipated demand on resources, considering the percentage and rate of placement of FONADE’S Credit Fund.
La República del viernes 3 de marzo publica una columna de opinión de la señora Marilyn Batista, bajo el título “Banca de desarrollo, puro realismo mágico”, en la cual incurre -al parecer por desconocimiento- en una serie de imprecisiones que es imperativo aclarar, acerca de lo que el Sistema de Banca para el Desarrollo (SBD) representa para el desarrollo de las MiPymes y los pequeños productores y, sobre todo, acerca de las medidas tomadas para ayudarlos a enfrentar los efectos económicos provocados por la expansión de la pandemia de COVID-19. Banca para el Desarrollo es una realidad comprobada.

FONADE may securitize its future revenue streams, assets, or a predetermined set of assets and corresponding cash flows.

The securities resulting from the securitization will be negotiable per the current mechanisms and rules governing the securities market. They may be acquired by any public or private entity, both national and foreign, including pension operators.

FONADE resources will be allocated as follows:

  • As capital for financing lending operations under the second-tier banking system.
  • As capital for granting guarantees to back the loans granted to SBD participants and members.
  • For nonfinancial and business development services.
  • To encourage, promote, incentivize, and participate in the creation, reactivation, and development of companies through subordinated debt, seed capital, and venture capital models.

For this purpose, the Board of Directors will allocate annually at least twenty-five percent (25%) of the resources from Article 59(h) of Law No. 7092, Income Tax Law, dated April 21, 1988, commonly called the “offshore banking tax.” FONADE will apply international best practices to develop these programs.

The Development Bank System’s resources are exempt from all taxes and will not be considered part of the minimum legal reserve requirement. This provision will also apply to financial operators who make use of these resources.

These resources are channeled through a coordinated group of 99 entities that place loans based on each beneficiary’s profile and market segment.

The beneficiaries established by law are micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises; entrepreneurs; micro-, small-, and medium-scale farmers; and associative business models. Moreover, priority sectors include women, senior citizens, ethnic minorities, clean production projects, persons with disabilities, young entrepreneurs, development associations, cooperatives, and lesser-developed areas.

What does the financial operator analyze to determine whether a project is viable and can be granted a loan?

Each financial operator has its own policies, however, some of the factors that are analyzed are:

  • Each financial operator will have its policies; however, some of the factors analyzed include:
  • Loan applicant’s repayment or credit history;
  • Project’s ability to repay and the guarantee offered; and
  • Business experience.
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