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ADB's Private Sector Operations Commitments Reach Record High of $3.1 Billion in 2018

News Release | 3 May 2019

NADI, FIJI (3 May 2019) — The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) private sector operations in 2018 climbed by 37% to reach a record high $3.1 billion, lifting ADB’s overall portfolio of private sector operations to $12.4 billion, according to the bank’s Development Effectiveness Report of Private Sector Operations 2018.

There were a record 32 new private sector projects committed in 2018, compared with 27 the previous year. Direct financing was complemented by a record $7.2 billion in commercial cofinancing last year, representing almost 50% of all cofinancing mobilized by ADB. The report was released at the 52nd Annual Meeting of ADB's Board of Governors in Nadi, Fiji.

“The performance of ADB’s private sector operations is helping the region address many challenges including improving its infrastructure, creating jobs, and enhancing access to finance,” said ADB Vice-President for Private Sector Operations and Public-Private Partnerships Mr. Diwakar Gupta. “ADB will continue to expand private sector assistance by diversifying into new and frontier markets, scaling up financing for agribusiness, health, and education, and moving into emerging infrastructure sectors such as water, waste, and sanitation.”

Private sector transactions by ADB in 2018 are expected to create nearly 26,000 new jobs across the region. They will generate enough electricity annually to serve 2.6 million average-sized households in Asia, while wastewater projects will help treat 1.8 million cubic meters of wastewater per year when fully operational. More than 6.1 million people as well as micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) will benefit from better access to financial services. Agribusiness projects committed last year aim to improve the livelihoods of more than 3 million farmers and improve their food security.

Active private sector operations have already contributed to the region’s economy, providing jobs for an additional 313,308 people and training 322,303 beneficiaries, mostly in financial literacy. Access to finance has been improved through active private sector projects for more than 6.8 million people and MSMEs, while other projects have contributed to the education of 9,455 additional students. ADB’s private sector clients have achieved carbon emissions reductions of 11.4 million tons annually.

Energy projects dominated the commitment portfolio of ADB’s Private Sector Operations Department (PSOD) in 2018, accounting for $1.7 billion or around 54% of total commitments. The volume of financial intermediary projects committed last year almost doubled to over $900 million, while PSOD’s Microfinance Risk Participation and Guarantee Program achieved record volumes by facilitating $271 million in local currency loans to microfinance institutions.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.