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China-led AIIB approves US$324m in infrastructure investment
[BEIJING] The China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) said on Thursday it has approved two loans and one equity investment worth US$324 million across Georgia, Tajikistan and India.
The bank's first ever equity investment of US$150 million aims to help attract private capital for infrastructure projects in India, the AIIB said in an emailed statement.
"Approving our first equity investment is another milestone for the Bank and will enhance our potential to source and fund high quality, private sector projects," said DJ Pandian, AIIB Vice President, in the statement.
"These three projects demonstrate a growing sophistication in our ability to support our member countries across different regions and sectors." The Beijing-based AIIB, formed in January 2016, aims to provide infrastructure financing in the Asia-Pacific region. The multilateral development bank has been viewed as a rival to the Western-dominated World Bank and Asian Development Bank.
The equity investment goes towards the India Infrastructure Investment Fund which focuses on investing in mid-cap infrastructure companies in India in sectors including energy and utilities, transportation and logistics and telecommunications, according to a project summary on the AIIB's website.
A US$114 million loan will help fund the Georgia Batumi Bypass Road Project and a US$60 million loan will go towards the first phase of the Tajikistan Nurek Hydropower Rehabilitation Project, according to the emailed statement.
The 2017 AIIB annual meeting will be held from Friday to Sunday this week on Jeju Island in South Korea.