ADB launches pan-Asian PPP support facility

The Japanese, Canadian and Australian governments have together pledged $64m to the Asian Development Bank’s novel platform.

The governments of Japan, Canada and Australia are providing a total of $64 million for an Asian Development Bank (ADB) facility to help developing Asia and the Pacific prepare, structure, and place public-private partnership (PPP) projects in the market.

The news comes a day after China emitted new PPP rules expanding the scope of concessions to include sectors such as energy, transport, water conservancy, environmental protection and utilities.

Japan is providing $40 million to ADB’s Asia Pacific Project Preparation Facility (AP3F), while Canada and Australia are contributing C$20 million (€14.8m; $16.5m) and A$10 million (€7m; $7.5m), respectively. Additional donors are expected to join in the future. ADB will also contribute $10 million.

The facility will finance project preparation work, including due diligence covering technical, financial, legal, and regulatory issues as well as safeguards.

“Given their huge infrastructure needs, governments in Asia and the Pacific need more options for funding and operational efficiency in infrastructure projects,” said Ryuichi Kaga, head of ADB’s office of public-private partnership (OPPP). “Although there is keen interest to attract private investment into infrastructure, many countries in the region struggle with key success factors, namely adequate implementation resources to prepare, structure, and place transactions in accordance with international best practice.”

OPPP is managing the new facility which will prioritise PPP infrastructure projects with regional cooperation, sustainable development, and climate change elements.

ADB’s efforts are in parallel with those of the Group of Twenty (G20) and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum which have stressed the importance of attracting private sector participation in infrastructure as a means to promote growth, expand trade, and improve livelihoods. 

In 2014, the G20’s Finance Ministers endorsed the Global Infrastructure Initiative which is aimed at increasing long-term private investment in infrastructure.