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IFC may up India exposure to $1 bn in 2003
February 13, 2003 15:25 IST
International Finance Corporation plans to increase its investment to $1.0 billion this year in Indian companies, mostly engaged in manufacturing, infrastructure and financial sectors.
"Our exposure was about $670 million so far," IFC vice president (operations), Assaad J Jabre, said at a Confederation of Indian Industry conference in New Delhi on Thursday.
The World Bank's private lending arm plans to extend the funds in one year if it gets good quality assets, he said.
"We are willing to do restructuring, refinancing and acquisition finances. Our focus would be financial markets and how to strengthen commercial banks. We are willing to invest more in infrastructure," Jabre said.
India is currently the sixth largest recipient of IFC funding. Since 1956, the multilateral agency has invested $2.4 billion in projects of about 77 companies.
IFC has invested $1.9 billion from its own account and $475 million in the form of loan syndication.
India's needs for funding are enormous but the main problem that came in the way was regulatory framework and infrastructure bottlenecks, Jabre said, adding bureaucratic delays and corruption were impeding growth.
"If these problems are addressed, we would meet the target of $1 billion investment sooner," he said.
IFC has invested in Bharti Mobile ($20 million), Indian Infrastructure Equipment ($10 million), Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services ($17.16 million), Sundaram Home Finance ($10.25 million), NIIT, RPG Cellular, RPG Telephone, Webdunia and New Path last year.
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