Manila, Philippines, October 18, 2001—The
International Finance Corporation has signed an agreement with Filinvest
Alabang (FAI) to provide a US$22 million loan to finance the development
of Northgate Cyberzone, an Information Technology park in the Philippines.
This is IFC’s first investment in an IT park.
Northgate Cyberzone was accredited by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority
as a special economic zone in July 1999. It is part of a 244-hectare
Filinvest Corporate City development, a burgeoning central business district
in southern Metro Manila. Northgate Cyberzone has been operational
since December 2000 with two completed IT buildings and a fully functioning
network operating center.
IFC’s debt financing comes amid economic uncertainties caused by a global
downturn. “The loan agreement reflects IFC’s continuing confidence
in the Philippine economy in general, and specifically, in this project,”
said Sergio Pimenta, IFC’s Country Manager in the Philippines. “We
believe that the IT park will provide macro benefits such as creating high
value jobs and sustaining the competitive edge of skilled Filipino workers.”
“We are optimistic about the overall prospects of the IT industry in the
Philippines,” said Josephine Gotianun-Yap, Executive Vice President of
FAI. “Northgate Cyberzone’s total IT environment, especially its
operating infrastructure, puts us at the forefront in terms of addressing
the needs of IT companies.”
IFC’s mission is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing
countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC
finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes
capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical
assistance and advice to governments and businesses. Since its founding
in 1956, IFC has committed more than $31 billion of its own funds and arranged
$20 billion in syndications for 2,636 companies in 140 developing countries.
IFC’s committed portfolio at the end of FY01 was $14.3 billion.