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IFC’s $25 Million Support to NMB Bank to Boost Green Financing and Access to Credit for Small Businesses in Nepal to Spur Thousands of Jobs


In Kathmandu:
John Narayan Parajuli
Phone: (+977) 9851122684
E-mail: nparajuli@ifc.org

Kathmandu, Nepal, June 30, 2020—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a $25 million loan to NMB Bank, one of Nepal’s premier banks, to boost financing for green projects and small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

The investment is expected to help expand NMB’s SME portfolio to over US$1 billion by 2025—creating up to 50,000 jobs over the next five years. SMEs have been a key engine of growth in Nepal, contributing 20 percent of GDP and creating over 60 percent of jobs in the country. The project is expected to see a doubling in the amount of loans available for SMEs from NMB, creating more jobs in the economy.

The loan marks IFC’s first climate focused lending to a financial institution in Nepal, incorporating the internationally recognized green loan principles. Overall the support for green financing, excluding hydro financing, is expected to contribute towards reducing CO2 emissions in the country. IFC expects the project will also build up NMB’s capacity to identify and evaluate green lending opportunities and increase access to green financing in Nepal over the next five years – trebling the amount of loans available for “going green”.  

"NMB is focused on financing of sustainable projects in the real sector in alignment with the Government of Nepal's growth plans. Our investments comprise of a balanced mix of real sector exposures which includes   hydro power, agriculture, microfinance, infrastructure, tourism, SMEs and green projects that are key drivers of economic growth and sustainability. In the current COVID -19 scenario, the new investment from IFC adds considerable value in helping us significantly increase our current portfolio and widen the scope for investment in sustainable and green projects" said Sunil KC, Chief Executive Officer, NMB Bank

Additionally, access to climate finance is limited in Nepal, which is expected to face a further setback due to the reduction in the flow of credit, in the wake of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This investment is supporting SMEs and Nepal’s sustainable development during this economic downtown. IFC believes in the tremendous opportunity for green growth through mobilizing the private sector,” said Wendy Werner, IFC Country Manager for Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan. “The project will help boost access to finance for small and medium sized enterprises, which have been highly affected by the impacts of the pandemic. SMEs will contribute to Nepal’s recovery in the aftermath of the pandemic.”
 
Based on Nepal’s commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement, IFC estimates the country’s has climate-smart investment opportunities of US$46 billion by 2030. IFC’s own Climate Implementation Plan of April 2016 has an overall target of scaling up climate investments to reach 28 percent of IFC’s annual financing and catalyzing US$13 billion in private sector capital annually by 2020.

IFC has invested in NMB since 2015 through a Global Trade Finance Program (GTFP) facility and in 2018, IFC extended a working capital solution (WCS) loan.

Since 1956, IFC has invested over $150 million in Nepal in the country’s priority sectors. By the end of June 2020, IFC’s committed portfolio in Nepal is expected to be over $500 million—a significant increase from previous year—where it stood at $75 million.

About IFC
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In fiscal year 2019, we invested more than $19 billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.

About NMB
NMB is a private commercial bank in Nepal with headquarters in Kathmandu. It also has two subsidiaries, NMB Capital Limited and NMB Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Limited. The Bank is listed on the Nepal Stock Exchange. NMB is currently the ninth largest bank in Nepal in terms of asset size. It grew its total assets at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.7 percent between July 2016 and January 2020 to US$1.6 billion. It currently operates through a network of 167 branches.

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