Sunday, June 21, 2020

CDC Group establishes presence in Nepal, invest more

CDC Group Plc – the UK’s impact investor for Africa and South Asia -- welcomes Rabi Rayamajhi as country representative for Nepal.
Rabi joins CDC from the Department for International Development (DfID) Nepal, where he was a private sector development advisor for four years and led projects in the financial and SME sectors. Prior to his role at DfID, Rabi used to provide advisory support to the Investment Board of Nepal (IBN) in promoting foreign investment and executing large-scale infrastructure projects in waste management, hydropower and cement sectors. He started his career at Standard Chartered Bank and has an MBA qualification from Singapore Management University.
According to a press note issued by the CDC, Rabi will be based at CDC’s representative office in Kathmandu, where he will work closely with CDC teams across Asia.
Over the last 18 months, CDC has made long term commitments to three businesses that will help economically support thousands of Nepalis through jobs, products and services. “We made a direct investment of a $15 million in NMB Bank, one of Nepal’s leading commercial banks,” the press note reads, adding that it was followed by a $12 million investment into a leading internet provider WorldLink, and a subsequent $21.9 million investment into the Upper Trishuli-1 Hydroelectric Project, which will supply clean and reliable electricity to millions of Nepalis.
In 2019 – along with a consortium of lenders – CDC signed a $453 million debt financing package to help build a hydro-electric plant in the Upper Trishuli region of central Nepal. Upper Trishuli is expected to help create over 20,000 jobs in the Nepali economy across multiple sectors. The hydro-electric plant will also increase Nepal’s electricity supply by one-third from today’s levels and provide clean, reliable power to millions of people.
For CDC, the Upper Trishuli commitment in 2019 swiftly followed a $15 million three-year loan to NMB Bank, one of the country’s leading commercial banks. In the same year we invested $12 million of equity in to the country’s largest private sector internet service provider, WorldLink.
Rabi will help accelerate our commitment to invest more capital in Nepal, and support local businesses to advance their commercial success as they work to adopt internationally recognised environmental, social and governance standards. He joins CDC at a time of uncertainty as the pandemic is challenging the lives of people, communities and businesses across Nepal, the press note further reads, adding that as a committed long-term provider of flexible capital to the private sector, CDC has never been more important. “With a mandate that includes providing counter-cyclical financing during financial crises, CDC is playing a role in protecting jobs and businesses.”
The firm’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic has three areas of focus: ‘preserve’, ‘strengthen’ and ‘rebuild’. CDC’s goal is to support the economic stability that will improve the lives of millions of people in Africa and South Asia, read more on its response framework here.
Head of Asia at CDC Srini Nagarajan welcomed Rabi to CDC as the Country Representative in Nepal. “His expertise in private sector development and extensive knowledge of the investment environment in Nepal will boost CDC’s priority of providing increased long-term capital support to businesses and bolstering sector growth in the country,” Nagarajan said, adding that Rabi will be instrumental in strengthening our partnership with businesses and broadening CDC presence in Nepal, as it works to enhance corporate governance, develop environmental and social strategies, promoting skills and job creation that power Nepal’s economy.
Likewise, the newly appointed country representative for Nepal Rabi Rayamajhi, said that he is proud to be representing CDC in Nepal and supporting the execution of the organisation’s mission to bring about lasting development impact and widespread economic growth in Nepal. “In only a short period of time, CDC’s commitment to Nepal’s finance and infrastructure sector has resulted in improved access and connectivity throughout the country,” he said, adding that he is keen to get to work on developing local partnerships that will continue to boost business growth and improve the lives of millions of people.
Welcoming a stronger presence for CDC in Nepal acting UK ambassador and country director for DfID, Nepal Lisa Honan said that the UK continues is committed to playing a strong role in working with the government of Nepal and all development stakeholders to ensure Nepal is ‘open for business’. “While the current Covid crisis has adversely affected Nepal’s economy, there are also opportunities for investments to help ensure Nepal’s recovery is resilient to future shocks and promotes green growth,” Honan added.

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