IFC, Canada, and HSBC support environmentally friendly projects in Armenia

26.06.2012 19:57
IFC, Canada, and HSBC support environmentally friendly projects in Armenia

YEREVAN, June 26. /ARKA/. IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, with the support of the Government of Canada, is helping HSBC Bank Armenia expand its financing of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, promoting the efficient use of resources and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, HSBC Bank Armenia reported today.

It said IFC will provide $15 million in financing to the bank, including up to $4 million from the IFC-Canada Climate Change Program. That will help the bank support hydro power plants and provide loans to small and medium enterprises interested in investing in energy efficient technologies. IFC will also provide HSBC Bank Armenia with advisory support. The initiative is expected to help Armenian companies become more resource efficient, profitable, and competitive.

“This partnership with IFC will help us take a leadership role in combating climate change,” said Astrid Clifford, HSBC Bank Armenia CEO. “We believe that the potential for development of sustainable energy finance in Armenia is significant and aim to offer our services to companies that plan to go green.”

Peter Kent, Canada’s Environment Minister, said, “The global challenge of climate change requires a global solution, and Canada is proud to support environmental efforts such as these.”

Thomas Lubeck, IFC Regional Manager for the South Caucasus, said, “Increasing sustainable energy use will provide Armenia with environmental and economic benefits. Those include reducing the country’s dependence on imports of fossil fuels and improving the quality of life through reduced pollution.”

IFC’s partnership with HSBC Bank Armenia is part of a strategy in Europe and Central Asia aimed at combating climate change. In addition to investments, IFC provides advisory services to businesses through the IFC Armenia Sustainable Energy Finance Project, supported with funds from the Austrian Ministry of Finance.

Since Armenia became a member of IFC in 1995, IFC has invested $202 million in 35 projects across the country, focusing on several industries, including financial markets, manufacturing, and mining. IFC Advisory Services also provides advice through projects focused on food safety practices, the financial sector, and regulatory simplification.

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, providing advisory services to businesses and governments, and mobilizing capital in the international financial markets. In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty across the globe, we helped our clients create jobs, strengthen environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities—all while driving our investments to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion.
The IFC-Canada Climate Change Program promotes private sector financing for clean energy projects. Canada’s financing to IFC for this program is part of its overall fast-start financing contribution for 2010–2011. Under the Copenhagen Accord, developed countries committed to provide fast-start financing of almost $30 billion for 2010–2012 to support climate-change mitigation and adaptation in developing countries. As part of Canada’s commitment to support climate change action in developing countries, Canada is contributing 1.2 billion Canadian dollars in new and additional climate-change financing over three years (fiscals 2010-2013).

HSBC Bank Armenia was the first international bank to open in Armenia, entering the market in 1996. HSBC Bank Armenia today has more than 35,000 individual customers and almost 5,000 corporate clients. It has 398 employees at nine branches and offices in Yerevan along with one of the city’s largest ATM networks. HSBC in Armenia has grown its assets to $464 million today from $5 million in 1996. -0-


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