CDC Group announces US$25 million loan to bolster Nepal’s priority sectors

By Laxman Datt Pant

CDC Group announces US$25 million loan to bolster Nepal’s priority sectors

In order to bolster Nepal’s priority sectors including hydropower and renewable energy, the CDC Group (soon to be renamed British International Investment), the UK’s development finance institution, has announced a US$25 million loan to Global IME Bank Ltd (GIME), one of the largest commercial banks in Nepal.

In addition to increasing lending to businesses across the infrastructure, construction, manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism sectors, this announcement is expected to enhance GIME’s ability to provide credit to businesses operating within key economic priority sectors and stimulate economic opportunities throughout the country. This commitment marks CDC’s second direct financial services investment in Nepal.

“The DFI’s commitment to GIME forms part of its strategy to bring the best of British finance to help accelerate productive, sustainable and inclusive opportunities in market-shaping sectors that create jobs and usher in transformative positive impact in Nepal and throughout the wider region,” the CDC statement released on December 15 reads.

CDC’s commitment to Nepal has been demonstrated by its investment in the country’s leading internet provider, WorldLink, as well as its commitment to the NMB Bank and the Upper Trishuli-1 Hydroelectric Project, it added.

Highlighting that this facility reinforces CDC’s commitment to continue to support post-COVID economic recovery and sustainable growth in Nepal, Srini Nagarajan, Managing Director, Head of Asia, at CDC Group said:

“Flexible and long-term capital is greatly needed to help drive the country’s green post-pandemic recovery, and it will ensure that local businesses have access to the finance they need to thrive.”

Amidst the slowdown in global capital flows due to the pandemic, this partnership will serve as a strong signal to other investors, he added.

Nicola Pollitt, British Ambassador to Nepal, commented that the UK has been supporting Nepal’s transition to renewable energy as well as its efforts to build resilience to the impacts of climate change and on post-COVID recovery. CDC investment in Nepal’s financial institutions sits side by side with the UK’s efforts to build institutional capacity to receive climate finance and offer financial products that address market gaps, particularly for SMEs, she added.

CDC’s investment in GIME is expected to increase access to finance for domestic businesses leading to better economic opportunities and the improved availability of domestic goods and services. These benefits will contribute to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals.