WASHINGTON – During the third annual Indo-Pacific Business Forum (IPBF) in Hanoi, Vietnam, U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) Chief Executive Officer Adam Boehler announced new plans to support investments in multiple countries across the region, including Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, India, and the Pacific Islands.
“DFC is committed to financing the modern infrastructure needed in these rapidly growing economies,” said Boehler. “DFC’s investments will help expand access to secure and reliable energy, financial services, and technology and help realize the vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
The IPBF brings together public sector and private sector investors to advance quality and sustainable development in the Indo-Pacific region. The event is supported by the Governments of the United States and Vietnam, and is co-organized with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in collaboration with DFC, U.S. Department of State, the Export-Import Bank of the United States, U.S. Agency for International Development, and other U.S. government agencies.
DFC highlighted the following projects and initiatives:
- Diversifying and expanding energy in Vietnam: During the forum, DFC signed a new Letter of Interest (LOI) with AES Corporation indicating interest in supporting an LNG terminal facility and 2,250MW combined cycle power plant in Son My, Binh Thuan Province. The project will help diversify and expand the country’s energy mix through the production of gas-fired electricity generation and the development of key LNG infrastructure. This LOI expands upon the original LOI issued by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), DFC’s predecessor agency, and indicates DFC’s willingness to consider an application for a loan for the project, subject to the agency’s comprehensive review and approval process.
- Promoting financial inclusion in Cambodia: DFC will provide a direct loan of up to $50 million to Hattha Bank to support lending to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in high impact sectors such as water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), agriculture, off-grid solar, education, and home improvement in Cambodia. This project also will advance DFC’s 2X Women’s Initiative as approximately 65 percent of Hattha Bank’s borrowers are women. Additionally, this project furthers DFC’s commitment to strengthen cooperation with the Japan International Cooperation Agency, which has executed a $50 million loan agreement with Hattha Bank alongside DFC.
- Supporting sustainable fishing in Vietnam: DFC will provide a loan of up to $11 million to Australis Aquaculture LLC to support the construction of a fish processing facility and the expansion of its existing barramundi open water fish farm. The project will help Australis meet growing demand for its nutritional, sustainably raised fish and is expected to create at least 200 jobs in Vietnam.
- New agreement expands potential for DFC support in the Pacific Islands: This week, DFC signed a new investment incentive agreement with South Pacific country, Tuvalu. The agreement establishes a framework that permits DFC’s mobilization of private sector investment, advancing economic growth and development. Under the agreements, DFC may make available its investment tools—including debt and equity financing, insurance, and technical support—to advance economic prosperity.
- Increasing connectivity in Myanmar: DFC will provide a loan of up to $40 million to Frontiir Co. Ltd. to support the expansion of its broadband network and to help meet increasing demand for access to digital services in Myanmar. This project is expected to provide affordable broadband to more than 2.5 million households and 120,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) over five years.
- Building a major new telecommunications cable: DFC will provide a loan of up to $190 million to Trans Pacific Networks to support construction of a 15,200 km submarine fiber optic cable connecting Singapore, Indonesia, and the United States. The new cable will expand and enhance internet access across the region, including to isolated islands.
- Strengthening energy security in India: DFC will expand its partnership with ReNew Energy to support projects that strengthen India’s energy security by providing clean, inexpensive power that will help diversify energy supply. India is working to almost triple its installed solar energy generation capacity by 2022.
- Expanding access to financial services for smallholder farmers in India: DFC will provide $20 million in financing to Samunnati to expand lending to low-income farmers and reach 75,000 additional borrowers operating in the agriculture sector over the next five years.
Some of these investments and agreements are subject to Congressional Notification.
Source: U.S. International Development Finance Corporation