Meeting set up to expand credit options

More than 100 representatives of government and financial institutions are in the second day today of a seminar on secured transactions. The goal is to increase the possibilities for credit of medium and smaller firms.

The term garantías mobiliarias is directly translated as secured transactions in English. A better term might be chattel mortgages used in Anglo Saxon law, which are the credit contracts for something tangible or intangible, including furniture, inventories, perhaps vehicles and trademarks.

The International finance Corp. of the World Bank, the Registro Nacional and the Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Comercio sponsored the event.

The legislature has a bill sponsored by the Laura Chinchilla administration to set up a registry to handle this type of credit agreement. Officials hope to have the system in place next year.

The registry would contain the contracts that have been negotiated between lenders and borrowers in the same way that the Registro Nacional keeps a record of property mortgages and vehicle liens.

The ministry said that a similar system in México is used mostly by small business operators. A farmer could even use anticipated crops as a loan guarantee, said the ministry.

The International finance Corp. is working to set up such systems in at least 20 countries which lacked laws specific to this type of transaction.

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