Johannesburg, South Africa, July 24,
2014 -- IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced it would invest
an additional $10 million for International Housing Solutions’ IHS Fund
II, drawing from Global Environment Facility (GEF) funding to support the
development of affordable “green” housing in South Africa.
This investment follows IFC’s $25 million
previous commitment in IHS Fund II. The new funding from GEF will allow
the Fund to invest in green homes certified by IFC’s EDGE green building
standard. The EDGE standard is afforded to buildings using less energy
and water than their peers, resulting in lower utility bills for home buyers
as well as reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
In addition to the GEF and IFC investments, the South Africa National Housing
Finance Corporation has committed $30 million and the Eskom Pension Fund
Stephanie Miller, World Bank Group Director for Climate Change, said, “South
Africa is a priority country for IFC’s green building program. We are
delighted that this additional commitment, using GEF financing, will help
the IHS Fund II support sustainable as well as affordable housing in this
IHS Fund II follows the success of the private equity investor’s first
fund, the SA Workforce Housing Fund, which has enabled the development
of more than 28 000 housing units with a combined value of more than ZAR
Soula Proxenos, Managing Partner at IHS
Proxenos, said it was significant that the fund’s strategy will incorporate
a strong “green” component especially as this was previously regarded
as beyond the scope of affordable developments. “We believe we are breaking
new ground and hope our approach will become a model of how to effectively
use green building technology in the gap housing sector without the financially
prohibitive aspects. Affordability is always one of the deciding factors
with regards to new developments,” she said.
IHS is a pioneer fund manager
in recognizing the potential of developing affordable housing, so-called
“gap housing,” in developing markets. It opened up a valuable new
sector for its investors while helping thousands of families to afford
a home of their own and start their journey to wealth creation through
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private
enterprises in more than 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise,
and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity.
In FY13, our investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $25 billion,
leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs and tackle the
world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit
About the Global Environment Facility
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is a partnership for international
cooperation where 183 countries work together with international institutions,
civil society organizations and the private sector, to address global environmental
issues. The GEF serves as financial mechanism for the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, the Stockholm Convention
on Persistent Organic Pollutants and the Minamata Convention on Mercury.
It also works closely with the Montreal Protocol on Ozone Depleting Substances.
Since 1991, the GEF has provided $12.5 billion in grants and leveraged
$58 billion in co-financing for 3,690 projects in 165 developing countries
to support activities related to biodiversity, climate change, international
waters, land degradation, and chemicals and waste in the context of development
projects and programs.