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European Investment Bank to back USD 1 billion Southeast Asia climate finance initiative
- European Investment Bank signs agreement at Chiang Rai ASEAN summit
- New ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility to back transport, energy and water schemes
- Significant private sector investment in green projects to be unlocked by new initiative
On the margins of the meeting of ASEAN finance ministers meeting in Chiang Rai, Thailand, Mr. Luca Lazzaroli, Director General of the European Investment Bank, formally agreed EIB support for a new USD 1 billion initiative intended to strengthen investment in green infrastructure across Southeast Asia.
The new ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility launched at the meeting aims to tackle investment challenges holding back sustainable transport, clean energy and water projects and accelerate private sector financing for green investment.
Luca Lazzaroli signed an agreement that outlines cooperation and support for the ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility with representatives of the Asian Development Bank and ASEAN Infrastructure Fund during a five-day regional visit to Southeast Asia.
“The European Investment Bank, the Bank of the European Union, is committed to supporting climate related investment across Asia and enabling our unique technical and financial experience to help the global community to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and tackle a changing climate. In the coming years Southeast Asia requires huge infrastructure investment needed both to help reduce carbon emissions and protect infrastructure against a changing climate. The EIB welcomes the new ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility and looks forward to strengthening cooperation with Asian and international partners to accelerate financing for transformational projects across the region.” said Andrew McDowell, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for South Asia.
The European Union reaffirms its continued support to regional integration and welcomes the creation of the ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility. Its launch today is a significant achievement for ASEAN under the chairmanship of Thailand. Across the region, water and air pollution, environmental degradation and a more extreme climate regularly threatens lives, holds back economic activity and hinders the achievement of sustainable development goals. The new ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility, with the support of the European Investment Bank and other partners, will help unlock private sector financial support for green projects and ensure that new infrastructure initiatives are better protected from a changing climate in the years ahead.” said H.E. Pirkka Tapiola, Ambassador of the European Union to Thailand.
The ceremony to launch the ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility was attended by Mr. Apisak Tantivorawong, Minister of Finance of Thailand, and Mr. Takehiko Nakao, President of the Asian Development Bank.
Mobilising private sector support for green investment
The ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility will enable private sector investors to support green projects by using public funds to reduce investor risks and strengthen project design and implementation.
The ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility is part of the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund, a regional financing initiative established by ASEAN governments and the Asian Development Bank in 2011 and administered by ADB. Since its establishment, the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund has committed USD 520 million for energy, transport, water and urban infrastructure projects across the region.
Alongside the launch of the ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility the today’s event, the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund also announced a new initiative to support financing of critical infrastructure in Cambodia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, and Myanmar.
Global support for new initiative confirmed
The European Investment Bank will support the new initiative alongside leading development finance and commercial financing partners active in Asia.
The French Development Agency AFD, German KfW, US OPIC, the OECD Center on Green Finance and Investment will also support the ASEAN Catalytic Green Finance Facility alongside BNP Paribas and ADM Capital.
EIB track record supporting climate action across Asia
The European Investment Bank, owned by the 28 European Union member states, is the world’s largest international public bank and one of the largest financiers of climate related investment worldwide.
In recent years, in support of climate action in Southeast Asia, the EIB has supported new sustainable transport projects in India, Laos, Vietnam, Bangladesh and China, water schemes in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and renewable energy in Nepal and India.