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Sunday, 31 January 2016

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ADB private sector financing topped $2.6 b last year

Manila, Philippines: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a record $2.6 billion of new financing and investments for the private sector last year, a 37% increase from a year earlier and 62% higher than in 2013.

As a result of this significant expansion, ADB's private sector investment portfolio has increased to over $8 billion, and its private sector operations are now targeted to double from current levels by 2020.

ADB President Takehiko Nakao said, "The ADB believes that the private sector is a key engine of growth in developing Asia and a critical partner in alleviating poverty. As a result, we are substantially expanding our private sector financing and investment operations to meet the rapidly changing needs of this dynamic region."

"By promoting an improved business climate, with enhanced access to more flexible financing solutions and trade facilitation tools, the ADB is helping the private sector create high quality jobs and increase living standards across Asia and the Pacific," he said.

In addition to the provision of its own capital, the ADB hopes to catalyse the flow of third-party commercial financing into its transactions through a variety of cofinancing and risk mitigation products.

Last year, ADB's private sector cofinancing was over $4.5 billion, representing over 40% of total ADB cofinancing volume during the year, and including nearly $1.5 billion of B loan syndications and risk transfers across such diverse markets as Azerbaijan, the People's Republic of China, India, and Myanmar.

The ADB also continued to ramp up its efforts to create more commercially-viable public-private partnerships (PPP) in the region, highlighted by its service as transaction advisor for the Philippines' largest ever PPP, a $3.8 billion investment in the North South Railway and commuter rail line.

Alongside the growth in overall volume, ADB's private sector operations also reached record levels in strategic priority sectors in 2015, including climate change, frontier economies, gender equality, and inclusive business

Over 30% of private sector transactions in 2015 were focused on climate change and or renewable energy, including the first 'green bond' in the region for a geothermal operator in the Philippines, an innovative credit-enhanced project bond for the refinancing of a wind power company in India, and the financing of new wind power generation project in Thailand. Of nine private sector energy investments approved in 2015, seven are considered 'green' projects.

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