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Canadian infra bank appoints 10 to board of directors

The Canadian government has selected 10 public and private sector representatives to serve on the board of directors at its new C$35 billion ($27.35 billion; €23.23 billion) national infrastructure bank.

It is hoped the Canada Infrastructure Bank will mobilise investments in projects across the country. The plan was announced a year ago and the lender is in the final stages of preparation before launching by the end of this year. The board, chaired by former Royal Bank of Canada chief financial officer Janice Fukakusa, is responsible for governance and oversight of the bank.

Board members include James Cherry, former president of Aeroports de Montreal, and Jane Bird, a lawyer who led the development and construction of the city’s Canada Line rapid transit project.

A full list of board members can be read in an Infrastructure Canada release.

The government said it searched for a board of directors that would “achieve gender parity” and “reflect Canada’s linguistic, cultural, and regional diversity”.

The country’s House of Commons passed legislation creating the bank in April, with the goal of bringing private capital to projects that would otherwise have difficulty attracting financing. The bank plans to use C$15 billion of existing federal funding and C$20 billion in equity and debt to help finance infrastructure projects and will favour the use of PPPs. The target is to bring in four or five private sector dollars for every government dollar invested.

Jim Leech, former chief executive of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, was chosen in February to serve as special advisor to establish the bank. In May, Toronto was chosen as CIB’s headquarters.