AIIB approves $ 145 million irrigation, $ 65 million solar investme..
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s (AIIB) Board of Directors has approved a USD145-million loan to India .. December 2019
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has ramped up its investments in India with a total in-country financing now standing at $2.9 billion.
Two of its most recent projects – approved by AIIB’s Board of Directors in October totaling $575 million – are expected to ease congestion in the country’s financial hub and boost private capital investment in renewable energy, power transmission and water infrastructure.
A loan of $500 million granted to the government of India is expected to fast-track work on Mumbai’s suburban railway network, improving the safety and daily commute of millions of passengers across the city. The funds will contribute to a quadrupling of Virar-Dahanu Road corridor (64 km) to provide an extension of the suburban railway service to connect peripheral areas with Mumbai. The project will also see the construction of a new suburban railway corridor between Panvel and Karjat localities (28 km) to cater to commuters in the area under rapid urbanisation and population growth.
Additionally, there will be an installation of control measures on 36 priority sections of existing lines to reduce fatal accidents. These measures include track segregation by fencing or using reinforced concrete walls and pedestrian crossings over or under the tracks. With a population of about 12 million, rail is the primary means of transport in Mumbai, where the suburban network totals almost 400 km and carries more than 7.5 million passengers a day.
“Over the past four years, AIIB’s investments in India have grown exponentially,” says DJ Pandian, Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, AIIB. “This is a clear sign of our valuable partnership. AIIB will continue aligning its commitments with the government’s priorities, with the bank serving as a catalyst to India’s continued development.”
On her part, Laurel Ostfield, Director General & Company Spokesperson, AIIB, shares, “So far we have invested $3 billion in India and we continue to see that grow. We have over a billion dollars in our pipeline for the country. The infrastructure need is huge here, India is our second largest shareholder and we will continue to invest in here.”
As part of its firm commitment to financing sustainable infrastructure, in October, the bank also approved a loan of $75 million to Tata Cleantech Capital (TLLC), a leading financier of renewable energy in India. The Tata Cleantech Sustainable Infrastructure On-Lending Facility project aims at increasing private capital investment in renewable energy, power transmission and water infrastructure. The project will increase the provision of affordable and clean power, reduce greenhouse emissions and expand the power’s network reach and capacity. Under the Paris Agreement, the Government of India plans to reduce the country’s carbon intensity by 30-35 per cent of 2005 levels.
AIIIB is a multilateral development bank with a mission to improve social and economic outcomes in Asia. Headquartered in Beijing, the bank began operations in January 2016 and has now grown to 100 approved members worldwide.
To date, AIIB, which commenced operations in India in 2016, has contributed to 13 projects to assist its second largest shareholder develop infrastructure and services in transport, energy, water and finance.
- SHRIYAL SETHUMADHAVAN
In the picture (L-R): Laurel Ostfield, Director General & Company Spokesperson, AIIB, and DJ Pandian, Vice President & Chief Investment Officer, AIIB