TOKYO, JAPAN (8 December 2023) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) have signed an agreement to establish the Leading Asia's Private Infrastructure Fund 2 (LEAP 2) with capital of up to $1.5 billion provided by JICA. The fund aims to cofinance high-quality, resilient, and sustainable infrastructure projects in Asia and the Pacific.

LEAP 2 is the successor fund to LEAP, which began in March 2016 and concluded in August 2023. LEAP 2 will continue to support ADB’s private sector operations by providing commercial and concessional finance for ADB projects. ADB will serve as the fund manager and administrator. LEAP 2 will contribute to ADB’s mission of reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific, where annual infrastructure financing needs are estimated at about $1.7 trillion.

“Climate change impacts are becoming increasingly severe and the need for high-quality and sustainable infrastructure is greater than ever in Asia and the Pacific,” said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa. “LEAP 2 will help the region meet this challenge by filling financing gaps for urgently needed infrastructure projects through the mobilization of private sector capital. This new fund demonstrates the continued strong commitment of ADB and JICA to helping the region develop the robust infrastructure it needs to grow sustainably.”

“LEAP has contributed to the sustainable economic growth in Asia and the Pacific by helping to finance high-quality infrastructure in critical sectors including energy, transport, and telecommunications. Through Leap 2, JICA will work with ADB to further narrow the region’s infrastructure financing gap, and help its countries address pressing development challenges including climate change and food security,” said JICA President Akihiko Tanaka. 

LEAP committed over $1 billion in cofinancing across 35 projects in 14 of ADB’s developing member countries. The projects supported 1.4 gigawatts of new electricity generation capacity; created 7,285 jobs, including 2,794 for women; avoided 6.2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent; and facilitated $13.8 billion in infrastructure investment, including $7.8 billion in the renewable energy sector.

LEAP 2 will operate within the same mandate and governance as its predecessor. Funded projects will aim to reduce carbon emissions, improve energy efficiency, and offer accessible and affordable health care, education, and communication services. The fund’s  broader scope includes investments in agribusiness and education where there is a clear link to infrastructure, while excluding gas refining, processing, transmission, and distribution. Key markets for LEAP 2 are expected to be India, Indonesia, Uzbekistan, and Viet Nam. 

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

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