IFC launches USD 1 billion bond programme for India

Washington: The International Finance Corporation (IFC) – a member of the World Bank Group – today announced the launch of a USD 1 billion offshore rupee bond programme to strengthen India's capital markets and attract greater foreign investment.

Said to be the largest of its kind in the offshore rupee market, IFC under the programme will issue rupee-linked bonds and use the proceeds to finance private sector investment in the country.

"IFC's offshore bond programme will help bring depth and diversity to the offshore rupee market and pave the way for an alternative source of funding for Indian companies," said Jin-Yong Cai, IFC's CEO.

"This is a new initiative for the intermediation of international savings for development in India. It will also help deepen the capital markets in India and establish an Indian rupee benchmark in the global markets," said Arvind Mayaram, Secretary of Economic Affairs in the Union Finance Ministry.

India accounted for USD 4.5 billion of IFC's committed investment portfolio as of June 30, 2013?more than any other country.

In FY13, IFC invested USD 1.38 billion in India to achieve several strategic priorities such as promoting inclusive growth in India's low-income states, addressing climate change, and supporting global economic integration.

Over the years, IFC has issued bonds in 13 local currencies, including the Brazilian real, the Chinese renminbi, the Nigeria naira, and the Russia ruble.

IFC has provided over USD 10 billion in local-currency financing across 58 currencies using a variety of financing tools?more than any other international finance institution.