iNDICA NEWS BUREAU–
The White House issued the following press release on Thursday.
“The United States is committed to an Indo-Pacific that is free and open, connected, prosperous, secure, and resilient. To help realize that future, the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI) and Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF), will work with IPEF partners and the private sector to scale high-standard investments, create more resilient economies, and drive long-term sustainable development.
“Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and Senior Advisor to the President Amos Hochstein hosted the PGI IPEF Investment Forum to discuss collaborative actions and shared priorities to increase private investment in the Indo-Pacific. Participants included IPEF Government Officials and Co-CEO of KKR Joseph Bae; Chairman and CEO of BlackRock Larry Fink; CEO of Citi Jane Fraser; Founder and Chairman of Fortescue Andrew Forrest; Founding Partner of Global Infrastructure Partners Matthew Harris; Founding Partner, Chairman and CEO of Global Infrastructure Partners Adebayo Ogunlesi; President, CIO and CFO of Alphabet and Google Ruth Porat; Founder and CEO of RockCreek Afsaneh Beschloss; and Founding Partner and Executive Chair of TPG Jim Coulter.
“Looking forward, the United States will continue to engage the private sector to orient around investment opportunities in emerging markets. In particular, IPEF partners will host an annual IPEF Clean Economy Investor Forum, beginning in 2024, to catalyze sustainable infrastructure and climate technology investments across IPEF economies that are party to the Clean Economy Agreement. The IPEF Clean Economy Investor Forum will bring together the region’s largest investors, innovative start-up entrepreneurs, cutting-edge project proponents, and government agencies for matchmaking and investment facilitation.
“The United States also announced a new PGI IPEF Investment Accelerator to scale high-standard project financing to drive sustainable economic growth in IPEF countries. Through the PGI IPEF Investment Accelerator, the United States will work with IPEF partners to develop country-tailored investment approaches targeting key sectors identified by the IPEF partners. This new one-stop-shop will increase project-specific financing, upstream project development, and robust private sector engagement to the benefit of IPEF partners. The Accelerator will focus on high-standard outcomes, including strong worker and environmental protections.
“As part of the Accelerator, USTDA is launching an IPEF Project Preparation Facility that will bring in additional funding to support the full life-cycle of project preparation while leveraging experienced solutions from USTDA, including project planning, architectural and engineering design, transactional advisory services, feasibility studies, procurement assistance, and other technical assistance. The Facility will be cabined to IPEF emerging markets and the U.S. Government will make an initial contribution of $15 million.
“To support the proposed IPEF Supply Chain Agreement, Clean Economy Agreement, and Fair Economy Agreement, the United States and its IPEF partners are deepening their engagement with the private sector and mobilizing investment through new programs, incentives, and partnerships. IPEF partners are establishing the IPEF Catalytic Capital Fund to pool resources and expand the pipeline of bankable climate projects. The Private Infrastructure Development Group will administer the fund and mobilize private capital by offering later-stage support to projects such as lender due diligence, viability gap funding, and other forms of concessional capital, in support of the IPEF partners’ shared objectives and goals under the Clean Economy Agreement. In addition, the U.S. Department of Commerce entered into a new public private partnership to mobilize engagement and investment from the private and nonprofit sector to strengthen Indo-Pacific supply chains, promote environmental sustainability, expand upskilling for workers, and grow economic opportunity in the IPEF economies in support of the objectives under these three agreements.
“Key Investments in 2023 from the U.S. Government and U.S. Private Sector in the Indo-Pacific. The U.S. Government and U.S. private sector also highlighted tens of billions of dollars of investments that boost and connect economic development in the Indo Pacific.
- The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and Government of India are continuing to partner toward a combined up to $1 billion investment in the India Green Transition Fund. This private credit Fund will target market-based returns, provide climate impact benefits, and accelerate the development of clean-energy transition projects in India through investments in solar, energy storage, and e-mobility. The Fund, and all projects in which it invests will adhere to DFC’s environmental and social policies and procedures, as well as international environmental and social standards, including the IFC Performance Standards.
- DFC reaffirmed its intent to sign a Letter of Interest with Vietnamese electric vehicle manufacturer VinFast at COP28. This partnership reflects DFC’s continued efforts with VinFast to support a domestic electric vehicle manufacturing industry in Vietnam, as well as the supply chains and infrastructure required for its success.
- Citi helped facilitate nearly $12 billion worth of transactions around the world, advancing sustainability and the clean energy transition, including the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s green bond, LG Energy Solution’s global green bond, Malaysian energy company Petronas’ India-based green ammonia venture, LG Energy Solution’s new electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing facility in Arizona, and General Motors & Samsung SDI’s new EV battery cell plant in Indiana.
- Citi provided a $100 million trade loan to ICICI Bank, supporting on-lending to low-income women micro-entrepreneurs primarily in rural India.
- ExxonMobil signed two agreements with Indonesia this week, which could comprise up to a $15 billion investment and substantially boost industrial growth and decarbonization in Indonesia and potentially across the Asia-Pacific, by assessing the potential for a carbon sequestration hub and exploring development of a lower emissions petrochemical facility enabled by carbon sequestration.
- Global Infrastructure Partners highlighted that since acquiring Vena Energy in 2018, it has more than doubled the pipeline of projects under development, including operations in Korea, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, and Singapore. In 2023, Vena Energy, a major diversified renewable energy company in the Asia Pacific region, developed 2.4GW of renewable energy projects in the Philippines and was also awarded 82 megawatts (MW) of solar projects in Thailand’s latest Feed-in-Tariff scheme auction in 2022.
- Google announced collaborations with the Governments of Thailand and Malaysia to bolster government cloud partnerships and policies, support digital upskilling, and expand infrastructure investments.
- KKR announced a $250 million follow-on investment ($675 million total) in an Indian decarbonization platform, Serentica Renewables, to support the company’s effort to achieve 4000 MW of installed renewable energy capacity that will aid clean energy delivery to large-scale industrial customers.
- KKR announced a $400 million investment in Optic Marine Services: an offshore telecom infrastructure services provider operating in the Asia–Pacific region, and a $665 million investment in Singtel, one of the largest data center operators in Singapore.
- KKR announced a $230 million investment into LEAP India Private Limited, the largest Indian pallet pooling player with a pan-India network of 21 warehouses and 3,500 customer locations.
- DFC announced a partial credit guarantee, designed with and supported by USAID, to Kotak Mahindra Bank to provide up to $200 million of funding to non-banking financial companies and microfinance institutions supporting women borrowers and micro, small, and medium enterprise borrowers in India.
- DFC announced a $20 million direct loan to Amartha Nusantara Raya to support expansion of Amartha’s microfinance lending to entrepreneurs in rural villages in Indonesia, specifically to women-owned and women-operated businesses in Indonesia.
- USTDA intends to provide a grant to Indonesia’s state-owned power generation and distribution utility, PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara to fund a feasibility study to support the development and implementation of renewable energy mini-grids for five sites in eastern Indonesia. This project is a key collaboration under the Net Zero World initiative launched by the U.S. Department of Energy and National Labs, as well as the Just Energy Transition Partnership program with Indonesia.
- USTDA announced a feasibility study to develop the MYUS submarine fiber optic cable system in a partnership with Malaysian company Hexa Capital Consultancy. The project would provide a direct link between Southeast Asia and the United States to add critical capacity for secure and cost-effective digital connectivity in the Asia-Pacific region.
- USTDA announced a feasibility study to support Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Informatics (Kominfo) to deploy open radio access network (Open RAN) technology that will provide digital connectivity for more than 1,600 unserved villages across Indonesia. The study will include a proof-of-concept to inform larger-scale deployment of Open RAN technology in support of Kominfo’s mandate to provide universal access for all Indonesians.
- USTDA announced a feasibility study for the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) to help deploy a fleet of low or zero-emission battery shunter locomotives for use in Bangkok and other train stations and throughout the country. This partnership will advance SRT’s strategy to modernize its railway system while decarbonizing and improving air quality by reducing locomotive emissions.
- USTDA announced a feasibility that will support the implementation of priority power interconnection across mainland Southeast Asia. The initial study will focus on two high-priority interconnection grid projects between Indonesia and Malaysia. The study will help to better utilize renewable energy resources and implement policies to advance clean energy and climate protection goals across Southeast Asia.