Infrastructure Investment: Into the void

Jan 1, 2013

Traditional sources of funding may have retreated, but a range of new capital providers is rapidly taking their place for financing infrastructure

By John Rumsey

Securing long-term capital for project finance has never been the most straightforward of tasks – especially so in emerging markets. But as global commercial bank financing remains under pressure, getting deals done via traditional sources is proving harder than ever.

"When you have lending of more than 15 years, which can be very important in the infrastructure sector, the availability of finance from traditional sources of commercial banks starts to disappear," says Gabriel Goldschmidt, senior manager infrastructure investments in Latin America and Caribbean at the Washington-based IFC.

As ever development institutions, export credit agencies and capital markets are needed to fill the gap. "Funding costs in dollars have increased and tenors are much more difficult for commercial banks," says Mexico City-based Javier Martín Robles, managing director at Banco Santander.

And the long retreat of European banks as they quit more active roles in the region has meant that...

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