Asia and Latin America
EIB lending in Asia and Latin America (ALA) started in 1993 and is governed by mandates from the European Union (EU). Under the current mandate ALA, covering the period 2014-2020, the EIB is authorised to lend up to EUR 3.4bn for operations supporting the EU cooperation strategies and complementing other EU development and cooperation programmes and instruments in these regions.
The EUR 3.4bn regional ceiling is broken down into indicative sub-ceilings of EUR 2.3bn for Latin America, and EUR 1.1bn for Asia (including EUR 182m for Central Asia). There are no amounts allocated per country.
The countries currently eligible for EIB financing under the ALA 2014-2020 mandate are:
- Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela.
- Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar/Burma, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Yemen
- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan
The EIB gives priority to the following types of projects in these countries: 1) climate change mitigation and adaptation (e.g. renewable energy, energy efficiency, urban transport and other projects that reduce CO2 emissions); 2) development of social and economic infrastructure, including water and sanitation; 3) local private sector development, in particular support to SMEs. In addition, to be eligible for Bank financing, projects are required to have good potential to contribute to the economic development of the beneficiary country.
Projects with a total investment above EUR 25m can be financed either directly to a project promoter or indirectly through a government or financial intermediary. Project promoters are required simply to provide the Bank's Operations Directorate with a detailed description of their capital investment together with the prospective financing arrangements. The total investment of a typical project under the ALA 2014-2020 mandate is above EUR 40m.
For smaller projects the EIB can provide credit lines to selected financial institutions, which then on-lend the funds mainly to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The financial institutions assess each project, assume the credit risk and set the loan conditions for the final beneficiary according to criteria agreed with the EIB. Interested promoters of such projects should contact the banks and intermediaries directly.
The EIB is serious about tackling climate change: not just in Europe but also worldwide. Recently the EU bank pledged to step up what it spends on climate action in developing countries to 35% by 2020. But it isn’t just about lending more money for big infrastructure projects. Increasingly, the EIB is working on ways to finance climate action projects with a clear positive impact for local people. On the eve of COP21 the EIB’s Director of Climate Operations Chris Knowles has been to Ecuador to check on two projects where the EIB is working, as a core investor, with an equity based fund called Eco Enterprises. He found that Runa and Terrafertil can help show us the way.
Ilya Espino de Marotta is the Panama Canal Authority’s executive vice president for engineering and programs management. She was appointed in 2012 to oversee the biggest upgrade to the canal since it opened in 1914. De Marotta had to overcome criticism from those who questioned her abilities in a male-dominated profession. But she got the job done and the massive new locks on either end of the 48-mile waterway will be inaugurated on 26 June.