JICA to provide concessional resources of up to $300 million
Co-financing agreement promotes investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency to mitigate negative impacts of climate change in the next 5 years
MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay – The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will provide up to $600 million in financing for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Central America and the Caribbean over the next five years.
The framework agreement was signed during the IDB’s annual meeting today between IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno and JICA Senior Special Advisor Hiroto Arakawa. The financing will benefit IDB member countries that already are eligible for JICA financing: Belize, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panama and Suriname.
“For more than 30 years, Japan has been a great partner of the IDB and, in particular, of our borrowing member countries,’’ said Moreno. “This agreement is another example of Japan’s efforts to help our region overcome key development challenges. This contribution, in addition to encouraging the adoption of climate-friendly energy investments, will support much needed mitigation measures to address the negative impacts of climate change among our most vulnerable nations in Central America and the Caribbean.”
Arakawa noted that Central America and the Caribbean are at the core of JICA’s agenda to address global climate change. “We count on the IDB’s experience, knowledge and long-standing working relationship with the region to create a successful synergy in this effort,” he said.
Under the agreement, the IDB and JICA have created two different co-financing schemes: joint-co-financing, in which the IDB will match the financing provided by JICA in each project; and parallel co-financing, in which each organization will separately finance specific components of an eligible project.
JICA will provide $300 million in concessional financing for the facility, which could potentially mobilize another $300 million from the IDB’s own resources if all projects are financed under the joint co-financing scheme.
“We are considering potential projects in the areas of hydroelectric power plant rehabilitation, photovoltaic power generation, and installation of energy saving facilities and equipment,’’ said Toshitaka Takeuchi, energy specialist and technical contact for the agreement at the IDB’s Energy Division. “In addition we will explore financing opportunities for geothermal power generation considering its significant potential in the region.”
All projects will be processed, approved and executed in accordance with the IDB’s sovereign guaranteed loan policies and procedures in the case of joint co-financing.
This framework agreement was a result of two Memoranda of Understanding between the IDB and JICA, the most recent in 2011, focusing on strategic partnerships on renewable energy and energy efficiency, a key component of the Bank’s response to climate change adaptation and mitigation. Under the recent General Capital Increase, the Bank sets a target of 25 percent of total lending to be dedicated to climate change adaptation, environmental sustainability and renewable energy.
Japan became the first Asian member country of the IDB in 1976 and has contributed over $5 billion to the Bank’s financial resources and, more recently, an additional $3.5 billion to the capital increase.
- Hiroko Miyakawa